ComparaOnline’s Sebastian Valin on Startup Maturity, Brazil on the Heels of US$11M Series B

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Chilean-born ComparaOnline has picked up a hefty round of funding.

Chilean-born ComparaOnline has picked up a hefty round of funding. Today, the company announced that it has raised US$11 million in Series B financing. Ribbit Capital led the round, with participation from Endeavor Catalyst, Rise Capital and Kaszek Ventures (a Series A backer as well).

Logo CO grisLaunched in 2009, ComparaOnline is a platform that helps consumers find and compare insurance and financial products, such as auto insurance, travel insurance, consortium finance and credit cards. For banks and insurance companies, it represents an effective way to expand distribution and lowers customer acquisition costs.

The company is a rising star in Latin America’s startup ecosystem. It’s brought in a total US$16 million in funding to date and actually marked Kaszek’s first Chilean deal. Currently, ComparaOnline employs over 200 professionals throughout the region and is present in Chile, Colombia and Brazil.

Much of ComparaOnline’s success can be attributed to the commitment and business savvy of its founder, Sebastian Valin, who is definitely an entrepreneur to keep an eye on.

We last caught up with Valin in December, when he was participating in the 46th Endeavor International Selection Process in Miami (unsurprisingly, he made the cut). There, he provided us with a few insights into his recipe for success – including trips to Europe to learn the ins and outs of his niche, raising his seed round from the three Fs, and spending his first day as an entrepreneur knocking on doors.

This latest round of funding comes as validation of Valin’s work and will serve as a boost in driving ComparaOnline forward. “This new funding will enable us to build on our current momentum in fast-growing markets in the region, particularly in Brazil and Colombia.  As the leading insurance and financial comparison platform in Latin America, we are able to attract the highest level of talent to create new and innovative experiences for our customers,” he remarked in the funding announcement.

Ribbit Captal’s Micky Malka echoed Valin’s enthusiasm:

ComparaOnline is transforming the way insurance and financial services are offered to Latin American consumers. I have enormous confidence that Sebastian and his talented team will establish ComparaOnline as the preeminent online marketplace for financial services in Latin America.  We look forward to helping the team leverage its best-in-class technology to drive innovative customer experiences while building a leading brand and capitalizing on the significant market opportunities in the region.

The ComparaOnline team.
The ComparaOnline team.

Catching Up

We reached out to Valin today to get the scoop on what’s going on with ComparaOnline and get a bit of a behind-the-scenes look into the startup.

As to what’s different with this latest round of investment, Valin pointed to a more mature approach:

After the Series A, ComparaOnline, with Kaszek, underwent a lot of changes that helped the company to mature. We started to hold board meetings and develop much more robust reporting systems. The team itself grew significantly with the help of top professionals. With all of this, the way we approached the Series B was much more pro than what we had for Series A.

For the Series A round, we presented the story of a project constructed at the hand of a strong, charismatic entrepreneur. For the Series B, beyond the story, charisma and strength, we also had a top-notch company to show investors.

ComparaOnline’s new investors were also likely attracted to the prospects of the Brazilian market, which the company entered via the strategic acquisition of CortaContas from Buscapé in March. Valin is currently living in Brazil to expand the company there, and by all accounts, everything is moving along quite well:

Much to our surprise, things are going very well. Everything is moving much faster than we anticipated, and the product roadmap for Brazil is advancing perfectly. Our marketing strategy and operational capacity is setting us apart from the rest of the market, which allows us to give clients a sensational experience. Today, we’re advancing faster than what we proposed in our budget for investors in our Series B road show. We’re very happy with how things are going.

About the author

Emily Stewart

Originally from the United States. Degree in Comparative Literature & Society from Columbia University. Background in marketing and communications, including copywriting, translation, editing and content creation. Localization experience. Twitter @doblackshoe