the mif blog

Stories of inspiring entrepreneurs and organizations, discussion and commentary of new trends in private sector development, and the latest events and publications.

WeXchange returns to Miami to promote women’s high-growth entrepreneurship

By Susana Garcia-Robles

So much of the “conventional wisdom” about women entrepreneurs is just not true. Women do have a tolerance for risk. Women are highly motivated to start their own businesses. Women are starting businesses in high-tech fields. Women’s businesses are just as successful as men’s—under comparable conditions.

That’s an important caveat, because all too often, women don’t face the same conditions that men do. They have less access to smart capital. Their circles of advisers and investors are much smaller. They encounter social stigma about women’s roles related to that conventional wisdom I mentioned before.

A country is hit by the entrepreneurial bug and start-up culture

By Susana Garcia-Robles


September 9th:  Arriving at my destination to speak at a Venture Capital conference sponsored by a local government agency.

September 10th and 12th: Attending the inauguration of the country’s Start-Up program and meeting the women behind that initiative and Startup Weekend. Listening to the manager of a prestigious private sector incubator. 

Is high-growth entrepreneurship in Latin America and the Caribbean driven by innovation?

By Susana Garcia-Robles


Click image to enlarge 

The Index of Systemic Conditions for Dynamic entrepreneurship, developed by PRODEM with the support of the MIF and led by Hugo Kantis, comes at a very timely moment, when conditions for increasing dynamic entrepreneurship in Latin America and the Caribbean have greatly improved. Today, we have a region that’s stronger in its economies and Venture Capital ecosystems. Poverty has decreased, the middle class has expanded. The region was resilient to the otherwise global great recession. This performance finally got the attention of overseas investors who began to flock to Brazil, Colombia, Peru, and, to a lesser extent, other countries. Governments are now aware of the need to move away from factor or efficiency driven economies to become innovation economies. The region’s growing young population has an appetite for innovation.

Networks are the Difference for Women Entrepreneurs

By Susana Garcia-Robles

Some barriers are easier to see than others. The obstacles women face are overt throughout some cultures and corners of the world – laws against driving and owning property, rules barring them from certain social settings – while others are more subtle.

WeXchange conference empowers Latin American women entrepreneurs

By Susana Garcia-Robles

WeXchange, a conference focused on women entrepreneurs in Latin America, is slated for Dec. 11-12 in Miami. This blog has been cross-posted from the Knight Foundation who supports the conference to connect entrepreneurs and foster the exchange of innovative ideas. In Latin America, women entrepreneurs represent a low percentage of the business community, in some places as low as 6 percent. Their low numbers mean they face more challenges than men in the region, mostly due to the lack of strong networks.