Frequently Asked Questions

What is Newtopia Ventures?

Newtopia is a venture capital firm with focus in Latin American startups that are going through any of the following phases: pre-acceleration, acceleration, pre-seed and seed.

What kind of startups Newtopia is looking for?

Early stage startups, tech based, highly innovative, aiming to regional and/or global markets, and lead by amazing entrepreneurs.

Why does Newtopia differenciate between Acceleration and pre-Seed?

We do know what startups need at every stage, that is why.

What is the 10 Week Program?

We work intensively with the selected and invested companies for 10 weeks, to get them into the best possible shape, find product-market fit and refine their pitch to investors.
The program includes: hands on mentorship with top tier advisors, curated workshops, fireside chats with investors and entrepreneurs, events, office space, among other perks.
Each batch culminates in The Newtopia Demo Day, when the startups present their companies to a carefully selected, invite-only audience full of VCs, CVCs and Angels from Latin America, USA, Europe and other parts of the world.
The 10 Week Program happens 2 times per year, and it rotates location each semester (Miami, Buenos Aires, Mexico City, Sao Paulo, Bogotá, among other locations in LatAm).
It does not matter where the Program is being held, any founder can apply with no restriction of where she/he is originally from (e.g.: a Colombian startup could attend the Buenos Aires’ batch, same as a chilean startup could attend the Miami edition).

Does the 10 Week Program cost any money to the startups?

We DON’T charge any fees to the companies to be part of Newtopia. We understand the complex reasons that cause some accelerators to charge fees to the companies that participate in their programs, and while we don’t think it’s bad behavior, obviously founders should deduct those fees from the investment when they’re thinking about those offers.
After applying with your company and once we close the application window to certain batch, startups will receive a notification about if they got selected or not for the soon to be launched Batch. Before getting the “Yes”, we might want to make an interview with the team and talk about certain aspects that might not be clear in the application form.

Do I have to move to the city where the 10 Week Program is being hosted?

It depends. If the COVID-19 regional situation is not allowing flights and/or is difficulting the relocation of the entrepreneurs, then the 10WP will be remote 100%. If there are flight restrictions but some entrepreneurs can fly (and some others are based in the “host city”), then the program will be held in-person and we do expect entrepreneurs to be in that city for the 10 weeks.
Nevertheless, we understand that sometimes it might be hard to relocate for 10 weeks (because of family or business reasons), that is why entrepreneurs are able to use part of the investment to cover expenses as they wish in order to fly in and out as many times as they consider. It is ideal that entrepreneurs are present in as many parts and activities of the programs as possible; more details will be provided once (and if) you are selected.

What is the SEED STAGE?

We call Seed Stage to our investment arm that is focused in startups that are going through a more advanced stage than Acceleration. Companies currently raising more than 500k and with already soft or hard committed investors can be considered for this section.

Does Newtopia take equity from startups? How much?

We have a standard deal for all our investments in ACCELERATION STAGE. We invest $100k (USD) on a post-money Simple Agreement for Future Equity, and we enter into an agreement with the company and founders that sets out some Newtopia-specific guidelines and rights, including a participation right to invest in the company’s future financing rounds (the “Newtopia Agreement”).
Newtopia Batch Investment: We’ll invest $100k in return for 7% of your company using a post-money Simple Agreement for Future Equity (very similar to the “YC Safe”, since we want to bring to LatAm the best practices created by the Bay Area highest standards in early stage investment). We think that $100k is currently the right amount for founders to be able to run their company and pay expenses at least 12 months at the acceleration phase in search of the product market fit.
The Newtopia Safe will convert into preferred shares when your company raises money by selling preferred shares in a priced equity round (this will typically be your “Series A” or “Series Seed” financing, whichever happens first as a priced equity round).
Newtopia and the founders also sign the Newtopia Agreement.
The SEED STAGE is different from the ACCELERATION, at the Seed Round the startup has the possibility to bring into the table the conditions of the financing round (valuation, amounts, conditions, among others) and we will analyze those items to see if it fits our standards. If the startup does not prove any advance with other investors following those terms, then Newtopia will make a proposal to the startup following a very similar SAFE from the ACCELERATION STAGE, except from for example investment amount and valuation.

What is a SAFE?

Y Combinator introduced the safe (simple agreement for future equity) in late 2013, and since then, it has been used by almost all YC startups and countless non-YC startups as the main instrument for early-stage fundraising.
The first YC Safe was a “pre-money” safe, because at the time of its introduction, startups were raising smaller amounts of money in advance of raising a priced round of financing (typically, a Series A Preferred Stock round). The safe was a simple and fast way to get that first money into the company, and the concept was that holders of safes were merely early investors in that future priced round.
But early stage fundraising evolved in the years following the introduction of the original safe, and now startups are raising much larger amounts of money as a first “seed” round of financing. While safes are being used for these seed rounds, these rounds are really better considered as wholly separate financings, rather than “bridges” into later priced rounds.
In 2018 YCombinator released the “post-money” safe. By “post-money,” we mean that safe holder ownership is measured after (post) all the safe money is accounted for – which is its own round now – but still before (pre) the new money in the priced round that converts and dilutes the safes (usually the Series A, but sometimes Series Seed).
The post-money safe has what we think is a huge advantage for both founders and investors – the ability to calculate immediately and precisely how much ownership of the company has been sold. It’s critically important for founders to understand how much dilution is caused by each safe they sell, just as it is fair for investors to know how much ownership of the company they have purchased.

Is it free to apply to Newtopia?

100% free.
If somebody is trying to charge you, please let us know immediately.

What happens if my startup was not selected?

Don’t give up. Don’t take it personally. Our “NO” might be our mistake, not yours.
Although it is always a good starting point to think about what you could’ve been done better either in your application and/or in the business side of your startup.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Newtopia Ventures?

Newtopia is a venture capital firm with focus in Latin American startups that are going through any of the following phases: pre-acceleration, acceleration, pre-seed and seed.

What kind of startups Newtopia is looking for?

Early stage startups, tech based, highly innovative, aiming to regional and/or global markets, and lead by amazing entrepreneurs.

Why does Newtopia differenciate between Acceleration and pre-Seed?

We do know what startups need at every stage, that is why.

What is the 10 Week Program?

We work intensively with the selected and invested companies for 10 weeks, to get them into the best possible shape, find product-market fit and refine their pitch to investors.
The program includes: hands on mentorship with top tier advisors, curated workshops, fireside chats with investors and entrepreneurs, events, office space, among other perks.
Each batch culminates in The Newtopia Demo Day, when the startups present their companies to a carefully selected, invite-only audience full of VCs, CVCs and Angels from Latin America, USA, Europe and other parts of the world.
The 10 Week Program happens 2 times per year, and it rotates location each semester (Miami, Buenos Aires, Mexico City, Sao Paulo, Bogotá, among other locations in LatAm).
It does not matter where the Program is being held, any founder can apply with no restriction of where she/he is originally from (e.g.: a Colombian startup could attend the Buenos Aires’ batch, same as a chilean startup could attend the Miami edition).

Does the 10 Week Program cost any money to the startups?

We DON’T charge any fees to the companies to be part of Newtopia. We understand the complex reasons that cause some accelerators to charge fees to the companies that participate in their programs, and while we don’t think it’s bad behavior, obviously founders should deduct those fees from the investment when they’re thinking about those offers.
After applying with your company and once we close the application window to certain batch, startups will receive a notification about if they got selected or not for the soon to be launched Batch. Before getting the “Yes”, we might want to make an interview with the team and talk about certain aspects that might not be clear in the application form.

Do I have to move to the city where the 10 Week Program is being hosted?

It depends. If the COVID-19 regional situation is not allowing flights and/or is difficulting the relocation of the entrepreneurs, then the 10WP will be remote 100%. If there are flight restrictions but some entrepreneurs can fly (and some others are based in the “host city”), then the program will be held in-person and we do expect entrepreneurs to be in that city for the 10 weeks.
Nevertheless, we understand that sometimes it might be hard to relocate for 10 weeks (because of family or business reasons), that is why entrepreneurs are able to use part of the investment to cover expenses as they wish in order to fly in and out as many times as they consider. It is ideal that entrepreneurs are present in as many parts and activities of the programs as possible; more details will be provided once (and if) you are selected.

What is the SEED STAGE?

We call Seed Stage to our investment arm that is focused in startups that are going through a more advanced stage than Acceleration. Companies currently raising more than 500k and with already soft or hard committed investors can be considered for this section.

Does Newtopia take equity from startups? How much?

We have a standard deal for all our investments in ACCELERATION STAGE. We invest $100k (USD) on a post-money Simple Agreement for Future Equity, and we enter into an agreement with the company and founders that sets out some Newtopia-specific guidelines and rights, including a participation right to invest in the company’s future financing rounds (the “Newtopia Agreement”).
Newtopia Batch Investment: We’ll invest $100k in return for 7% of your company using a post-money Simple Agreement for Future Equity (very similar to the “YC Safe”, since we want to bring to LatAm the best practices created by the Bay Area highest standards in early stage investment). We think that $100k is currently the right amount for founders to be able to run their company and pay expenses at least 12 months at the acceleration phase in search of the product market fit.
The Newtopia Safe will convert into preferred shares when your company raises money by selling preferred shares in a priced equity round (this will typically be your “Series A” or “Series Seed” financing, whichever happens first as a priced equity round).
Newtopia and the founders also sign the Newtopia Agreement.
The SEED STAGE is different from the ACCELERATION, at the Seed Round the startup has the possibility to bring into the table the conditions of the financing round (valuation, amounts, conditions, among others) and we will analyze those items to see if it fits our standards. If the startup does not prove any advance with other investors following those terms, then Newtopia will make a proposal to the startup following a very similar SAFE from the ACCELERATION STAGE, except from for example investment amount and valuation.

What is a SAFE?

Y Combinator introduced the safe (simple agreement for future equity) in late 2013, and since then, it has been used by almost all YC startups and countless non-YC startups as the main instrument for early-stage fundraising.
The first YC Safe was a “pre-money” safe, because at the time of its introduction, startups were raising smaller amounts of money in advance of raising a priced round of financing (typically, a Series A Preferred Stock round). The safe was a simple and fast way to get that first money into the company, and the concept was that holders of safes were merely early investors in that future priced round.
But early stage fundraising evolved in the years following the introduction of the original safe, and now startups are raising much larger amounts of money as a first “seed” round of financing. While safes are being used for these seed rounds, these rounds are really better considered as wholly separate financings, rather than “bridges” into later priced rounds.
In 2018 YCombinator released the “post-money” safe. By “post-money,” we mean that safe holder ownership is measured after (post) all the safe money is accounted for – which is its own round now – but still before (pre) the new money in the priced round that converts and dilutes the safes (usually the Series A, but sometimes Series Seed).
The post-money safe has what we think is a huge advantage for both founders and investors – the ability to calculate immediately and precisely how much ownership of the company has been sold. It’s critically important for founders to understand how much dilution is caused by each safe they sell, just as it is fair for investors to know how much ownership of the company they have purchased.

Is it free to apply to Newtopia?

100% free.
If somebody is trying to charge you, please let us know immediately.

What happens if my startup was not selected?

Don’t give up. Don’t take it personally. Our “NO” might be our mistake, not yours.
Although it is always a good starting point to think about what you could’ve been done better either in your application and/or in the business side of your startup.