Update Start-Up Brasil: 908 Companies in the Running

When the Brazilian Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation announced startup support initiative Start-Up Brasil last year, there was little doubt that the impact of the program would be big.

Earlier this year, nine accelerators were selected to join the initiative (the original plan was six).  The call for applicants was launched at the Global Entrepreneurship Congress in March, and inscriptions came to a close at the end of May. And now, Start-Up Brasil has released some numbers indicating exactly how expansive its reach is.

This week, it was revealed that 908 startups registered to participate in the inaugural Start-Up Brasil program.

A total of 672 projects from 21 Brazilian states applied. Most are based in the Southeast of Brazil, namely, São Paulo (31.3%), Minas Gerais (13.8%) and Rio de Janeiro (13.1%). The Northeast represented 13% of inscriptions and the South 17%. The companies hail from diverse sectors, such as human resources, engineering, automation and healthcare.

International startups are in the mix as well, with 236 companies from 37 countries applying. U.S.-based projects expressed the most interest, representing 31% of international applicants. Argentina followed with 11%, after which came Chile (8%), India (6.5%), France (5.4%), Portugal (3.8%) and Spain (3.8%). Startups from Malaysia, Cyprus and South Africa applied as well.

Now, the hard part begins – selection. Just 50 startups will make the first cut, meaning only 5% of the companies in the running will join the first stage of the initiative. Another 50 projects will be selected in November.

The selection process is a complex one, involving Start-Up Brasil staff as well as the accelerators and startups themselves. The program’s timeline is tight, however, so we’ll likely find out which projects make the cut soon.