Em Conversa looks to uncover the secrets in Latin America (LatAm) that have caused the fintech market to boom, from being worth less than $50million in 2016, to $2.1billion in 2022. This week, we sat down with Rodrigo Malachias, the CEO of MedibleGo, the company working to create better financial inclusion. He explained how financial inclusion can benefit the fintech market in Chile.
In early June 2023, MedibleGo announced it was looking to expand into the UK. This was made possible due to ProChile Global X, a soft-landing program for Chilean companies willing to expand towards Europe. In light of this news, The Fintech Times sat down with Rodrigo Malachias to get a greater understanding of the fintech sphere in Chile and how MedibleGo wanted to progress in the future.
Can you tell me more about the company and your role within it?
My name is Rodrigo Malachias and I’m the CEO of MedibleGo. Driven by a steadfast commitment to building a brighter tomorrow, MedibleGo’s purpose is to alleviate inequality, amplify opportunities, and foster an inclusive and empowering future for all. MedibleGo empowers those who are bursting with a vision or business idea to ignite their passion to create a better tomorrow by creating new products, services and movements.
If a business is currently facing challenges in achieving its desired outcomes, or if a person possesses a passion or talent that is not fully appreciated by their current employer, MedibleGo can assist. The company is specialised in helping individuals and businesses comprehensively understand their strengths, needs, and desires. With this knowledge, they collaborate to develop innovative products, services, or movements that resonate with the target audience and propel the business towards success.
My role at the company is to ensure that our product development is working well. This is in addition to securing clients and investors, as well as managing the whole organisation.
What are some fintech trends we’re seeing in Chile?
The biggest fintech trends we’re seeing in Chile are being enabled through open finance. This is largely because open finance in Chile just got approved by a law affecting all fintechs – it’s not even regulated yet! Open finance is massively shaking the industry, and so most of the fintechs that are emerging in Chile are seeing the technology as an opportunity to improve their traditional business infrastructures.
If we compare Chile to the UK, I would say that the fintechs in the Latin American country are exploring the same solutions that were explored in the UK three to four years ago.
What is MedibleGo doing to improve the fintech sector in Chile and LatAm?
MedibleGo’s mission is to tackle global inequality. Often when people think of this, they think of emerging countries, but there are inequalities everywhere, including in developed countries. Take the UK for example. It has the most inequality among developed countries, and in fact, in the entirety of Europe.
Unfortunately, Chile has tremendous inequality. So, similar to other fintech solutions, we are trying to promote financial services for those that do not have access to traditional financial services.
Our platform was created to help micro and small businesses to create new product solutions. But we don’t stop there. Once our journey with them is completed, we want to lease them micro finances so they can have a small chunk of money. Though in the grand scheme of things it may not seem like a lot, to them it is and it will help these companies take their businesses to the next level.
How does the Chilean fintech sector compare to that of the rest of the world?
Fintech law in Chile was beautifully written. In my opinion, it’s one of the most interesting in the world. The reason for this is Chile wasn’t a trendsetter in the space, per se. The country was able to learn a lot from others, including the UK and Brazil. Brazil has done a great job when it comes to fintech regulation and open finance.
It has inspired a lot of our lawmakers to create a very fulfilling law in the fintech sphere. Sure, it wasn’t a first mover when it comes to open finance in LatAm, let alone the world. But nonetheless, the early steps that have been put in place have set it up for success.
What are some unique challenges associated with the region/country in the fintech space?
When it comes to the biggest challenges the country is facing, truthfully, I think a lack of players is one of the main ones. For a sector to evolve, especially in the fintech world, it needs to have more players challenging the ecosystem. In Chile, there are just not that many fintechs yet. They’re still being born.
There are a lot of challenges regarding funding and financing, and the talent in the country too.
Ultimately, we need more challengers in the field. We need more interest and more players to come into this area.
Plans for the future (roadmap and growth plan)
Our plan for the future is to launch our platform across the globe. MedibleGo is currently looking to launch in the UK, but our ambitions don’t stop there. We are eager to launch in Europe too, and following that, the US. We understand that we are going to face a lot of challenges in the future. One of the main ones, in fact, is finding the right partner in all these different countries. We need strong partnerships in order to succeed and launch in all these markets.
As a final thought, I would encourage people to develop fintech solutions for those that don’t have access to a traditional or formal financial system. Fintechs have a great opportunity to tackle inequality across the globe. If we want to create a more equal society for all, we need fintechs to step up.
I would encourage everyone who has an idea and talent, or simply just a problem they’re facing, to come forward to us at MedibleGo. We want to talk to you to help fintechs flourish in all markets.