Cambridge Connection Santiago 2014: bonds between Chilean and British entrepreneurs10/03/2014
By: José Ignacio Mansilla
Cambridge Connection Santiago 2014 is the second version of the forum that was held for the first time in Singapour, 2013. In this occasion, the meeting took place in different places of Santiago and Valparaiso, March 10-16. This event was sponsored by several technological companies and Chilean research centers, and was supported by the UKTI.
This five-day encounter was aimed to gather together the Chilean entrepreneur community with investors associated to Cambridge Capital Group, Cambridge University Technological Cluster, one of the most important of Europe. During this meeting, participants visited biotechnology companies such as Biosigma, Harting, and other institutions, including Fundación Ciencia & Vida and Fundación Chile. Besides, they met privately with investors and biotechnological startup companies, and visited typical places of Chile.
According to Cristián Hernández-Cuevas, Chief Business Officer of Fundación Ciencia & Vida, the idea of carrying out a meeting like this in Chile came up after attending the event held in Singapour. On that occasion, Zentynel requested Cambridge Capital Group to visit them in Chile. In relation to the Chilean encounter, Cristián added: “The most valuable thing was to take advantage of the chance of building bounds and trust relationships with British investors and entrepreneurs associated with the Cambridge University Technological Cluster. We have already invested in one of their technological companies [in Cambridge], and now we expect that they get interested in doing the same with technology ‘made in Chile’.
One of the most important activities of this forum, the Pitch Fest, took place on March 12 at the Prince of Wales, Country Club. This event gathered together 16 Chilean and British companies seeking capital, so that they could show their technologies and innovations to around 40 investors from both countries. As a result of this exchange, Denis Kennedy, President of the Cambridge Society of Chile, pointed out: “It is remarkable that they [Cambridge Capital Group] come to Chile. They have seen a mix of innovation, business, and trust relationship. It is all about filling the gap between two worlds that do not often connect with each other.”