Work has begun on the first stage of a new business hub in Santiago that is being established to foster innovation and new ideas. When completed, the Centro Movistar in the Providencia district will be the first location in Latin America designed to help entrepreneurs make their dreams come true.
The center for innovation is part of a broader goal to convert Chile into a world class destination for creative new businesses. It is being developed as the result of an alliance between telecommunications company Movistar, which supports new ideas through its Movistar Innova project, and Start-Up Chile, a program run by the government’s Economic Development Fund (CORFO), which aims to attract entrepreneurs from all over the world to the South American nation. The state-of-the-art facility will also house Start-Up Chile’s head offices.
The facility will be situated in a 16,136 square foot (1,500 square meter), three story building dating back to the 1930s and will be equipped with its own business banking center, risk fund manager, a restaurant and a function center. The plan for the modern office complex also includes collaborative work spaces for up to 200 innovators.
“We believe that countless entrepreneurs will emerge from this space with initiatives that will change the world and have an impact on the market,” the executive director of Movistar, Claudio Muñoz, told La Tercera. “We hope that the next Twitter or Facebook will be born in this space. That’s the kind of outcome we’re betting on.”
“International experiences have demonstrated that it is increasingly important that entrepreneurs, investors and the technology are all in the same place to maximize collaboration and to create value – which is crucial if we are going to generate a pro-innovation culture in our country,” Muñoz added.
Another purpose of the center is to link Chilean innovators with like-minded business people and investors from around the world.
“We want to connect global entrepreneurs with local ones to generate synergies,” said Hernán Cheyre, the executive vice-president of CORFO. “Now is the opportunity for anybody to become a part of Start-Up Chile and for our country to become a magnet for innovation and entrepreneurialism in the region.”