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Felipe Echandi is the co-founder of Cuanto, a YCW19 startup based in Panama. Cuanto allows small merchants and independent Latin American entrepreneurs to create their mobile-first online store to sell over social-media. Think of Shopify for LatAm's social media-based e-commerce experience. Prior to Cuanto, Felipe has extensive experience in blockchain and Fintech.
In this episode, we discuss the state of the LATAM fintech and e-commerce ecosystem, where he draws inspiration as he builds his startup, and the future of mobile in emerging markets.
What We Discussed
[1:55] Tell me about your background
[7:35] Why did you build Cuanto?
[11:53] What's the main difference between Cuanto and Shopify?
[14:08] What is your relationship with the rest of the infrastructure providers like payments and logistics?
[18:35] Decentralized vs. Centralized E-Commerce Platforms
[20:25] The state of payments in LATAM and micropayments
[23:50] Will LATAM go through the credit card wave before mobile payments?
[27:49] Will there be consolidation in the payment space?
[32:39] What takeaways from your time in the US was helpful in working in LATAM? Do you draw inspiration from other markets as well?
[37:39] Why did you choose to base in Panama?
[40:38] What do you need to pay attention to when working in LATAM to mitigate risks like economic cycles and political swings?
[43:31] What do you think other markets can learn from LATAM or what you're doing with Cuanto?
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