Miryam Lazarte
IMPACT INVESTING

Miryam Lazarte

#157

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Community Builder | Global Startups | Venture Capital

Miryam Lazarte – The attitude of founders

“You have to recognize when something is not working and when you have to shut down your business and start later on or something better.”

ABOUT

Miryam Lazarte is the founder of Global Startups Accelerator (former LatAm Startups), a pivotal Toronto accelerator that catapults startups from emerging markets to a global audience. With her at the helm, With her at the helm, it has been selected as one of the organizations supporting Canada’s Startup Visa program and has secured a commendable $3M in federal support.

Miryam is also a General Partner of GSA Ventures, a Venture Fund committed to technology entrepreneurs dedicated to strategically investing in immigrant entrepreneurs.

Since its inception in 2017, Global Startups has nurtured over 200 tech companies, providing a springboard to validate their ventures in North America. Under her guidance, these startups have made substantial headway into the Canadian ecosystem, boasting two unicorns in their portfolio.

Hailing from Colombia, Miryam’s entrepreneurial spirit took root in her childhood. Today, she is driven by her fervour to fortify economic connections between Canada and the vast, yet underexplored, Latin American market of 800 million consumers.

Miryam’s work in the Canadian technology field has been recognized. She was named one of the “10 Most Influential Hispanic-Canadians 2022” and won the “Newcomer Entrepreneur Of The Year 2019” award from Startup Canada.

REQUEST INTRODUCTION Arrow

THE FULL INTERVIEW

Miryam Lazarte

The full #OPNAskAnAngel talk

Jeffery: Welcome to Impact Investing, brought to you by the Supporters Fund. From the four square foot or 4000 books, the smallest library in the world. Lisbon, Portugal. I’m your host, Jeffery JP Potvin. And let’s please welcome from Babe Ruth’s first professional home run in 1914. At Hanlon’s Point, Toronto, Canada, Miriam Lazard, the general partner of GSR ventures. Welcome, Miriam. It’s a real pleasure having you join us today.

Miryam: Thank you so much for the invitation. It’s a pleasure to be here. And it’s nice to see that you’re in Portugal.

Jeffery: Thank you. Likewise. Very nice to see you again. And I love Portugal. Portugal. So brilliant place it is. I’ve been here many times. I’m a big fan, and, Well, I’m actually more of a fan of yours, so we’re going to dive into more about you and why I’m a fan. But you’ve done and we’ve met over many times over the past. So I’m going to say it feels like ten years. but you’ve done some incredible things in the early stage startup space, technology, space. And today we get to dive into that. So the way we love to start our show off is that we want to hear more about you. So maybe you can share all the way back from your University of Victoria days, all the way through to the startup visa and all the things that you’ve been building on and all the great stuff that you’ve been doing. And then one thing about you that nobody would know.

Miryam: Sure. No. Thank you again. so I’m one of you, you know, from Colombia. I actually arrived first time in Canada, 2008, in Montreal, and that, you know, I had a really fun time there, 18 months, working and learning French. I actually and, you know, there are a few things that you are going to learn about me that I never said to other people, but I actually learned back at home, you know, three languages at the same time, English, French and Japanese, which I normally ask people not to do that because I finished not learning anything so I can read Japanese, but I don’t know what I’m reading. And certainly when I arrive in Montreal, I just realized that I didn’t speak French or English. So I have to go through, you know, learning again, French. And you’re going to require, in Montreal. And years later, I moved to new Jersey, 18 months after I moved to, Victoria and British Columbia place that I loved, you know, for years, been there, I was able to, you know, have, you know, training sessions. Training sessions in University of Victoria. But I already have, you know, two bachelor’s degrees, from my home country. So I’m a graphic designer and an international business professional, from my home country. And, and then, you know, basically what I was doing in, in University of Victoria was complimenting some of my studies and at the time was, you know, actually first time working with a technology company in British Columbia. And that gave me the first, kind of taste of what was, technology in Canada and the big, you know, opportunity that, people actually have, you know, to develop technology companies here in the country. So, 2000, 15, I moved to Toronto, and since then I’ve been working, you know, different initiatives. But all in regardless of technology, companies are newcomers. So, what we have today of global startups was initially Latam startups, for seven years, you know, working with a state of strong, Latin America and other places. And then, now we have this year also an investment fund. So has been kind of an evolution from working directly for technology companies and, you know, growing, community of newcomers in tech. And the things that you said that, people. So, don’t know about me. Well, I’m from Colombia, and I don’t like coffee. I just drink tea. so many people normally say, well, you know, would you want a coffee or this? You know, Colombians are famous for coffee, but, yeah, I don’t like.

Jeffery: It’s amazing. Well, I’m going to share that in when it comes to drinking tea or coffee, I’m the same. I go to the tea side and I have been a teacher, and I think it’s because my parents were tea drinkers. So that was my thing every morning, holding your my mother’s cup of tea when she drove and parked the car out and -20 snowfall. but I think when, I come to Portugal, they’re so inept at having the little shot of espresso that no matter what, if I’m here for five minutes or five days, I cannot help it. I have to have an espresso. I try so hard not to, but it’s so hard. It’s so good. Can’t help it.

Miryam: And that’s right. And I have to steal, you know, I have to drink my coffee still. Because, you know, I need energy during the day. I know that he doesn’t give me that energy, but I do not time to time. I have to, you know, because I like I more like a medicine. So, but, yeah, so.

Jeffery: Oh, it’s a great it’s a great product. I’m a big fan. I think it’s a calming effect and it has all different layers for whatever you’re feeling one day to the next. Or tea is a is a great product. I kind of want to well, I’m actually fascinated by the fact that you’ve got these three languages. I spoke for ourselves. See? So say more France’s, say Quebec. But, you know, at the end of the day, you learn things as you go through old time. So it’s kind of cool that you were working on those. And Japanese. konnichiwa. Everything is very difficult to learn a mill