Before Divibank, small and medium enterprises in Brazil only had two financing options: getting debt from a bank or raising venture capital. But most startups don’t meet bank financing requirements, and not every company can raise VC or wants to raise VC.
Divibank provides a third alternative for startups and SMEs: revenue-based financing. Divibank launched in 2020 by financing digital marketing campaigns via a revenue share model. Since then, Divibank has launched other products including inventory financing and recurring revenue financing.
In this episode, I sat down with Rebecca Fischer, Divibank’s CPO and cofounder to talk about what she learned from working on digital marketing campaigns for huge brands, how she got Divibank off the ground, and how Divibank provides a better financing alternative for entrepreneurs in Brazil.
The overlooked potential of ad spend
Before starting Divibank, Rebecca worked for an advertising agency where she helped companies grow via paid digital ads. Clients invested huge amounts of money in their digital marketing campaigns, and the returns were great.
During her time running ad campaigns, Rebecca discovered two things that kickstarted the idea for Divibank: ad spend was a real asset class that could be an alternative to VC funding, and many people weren’t taking their ad spend as seriously as she thought they should be.
Listen to this episode to discover how Rebecca found an opportunity to provide financing for entrepreneurs to scale through digital marketing campaigns.
Non-dilutive capital to extend entrepreneurs’ runways
Divibank provides financing for founders who don’t want to dilute themselves through venture capital and want access to capital to scale their businesses.
The startup’s clients are usually digitally native companies that know what their revenue will look like in the short term. They are looking for financing, but they are not ready yet to split the pie with many other shareholders. Divibank gives them the freedom to choose whether to raise VC money or keep growing with non-dilutive capital.
Check out this episode to find out how Divibank is helping founders in Brazil extend their runways and raise when they’re at a higher valuation.
Outline of this episode:
- [01:10] – About Divibank
- [01:42] – What financing looks like for SMEs in Brazil
- [03:40] – Divibank’s average client
- [05:10] – Rebecca’s background
- [06:00] – Lessons learned from working in advertising agencies
- [08:08] – ABC of non-dilutive financing
- [11:30] – Divibank’s zero to one
- [12:58] – Divibank’s first steps
- [14:43] – Divibank’s experience with fundraising
- [16:30] – Where is Divibank today
- [17:49] – Rebecca’s book recommendations
- [19:21] – Rebecca’s advice to a younger self
- [20:10] – What’s next for Divibank
Resources and people mentioned: