Launching my new venture:

Grobby is very proud to announce that more than 6 months of planning, are bringing me to the point of launching my new business idea.

So far, it will be available only via a fashion blog, but in the future, a new tool will come online. Stay tuned.

Check it out at

To the exciting times ahead!


A bit about everything or a lot about one thing

I love watching the stats for my blog. I get hits from almost every country in the world (some of them I am ashamed to admit I have never heard of). I don’t get too many hits, though, especially when I am comparing to some of the most popular blogs, that often, I am left wondering, why do people bother with those topics.

In my fairly small experience in the web sphere and with marketing overall, I learned about targeting: pick one type of audience that is interested in a specific topic and spam their socks off with any possible spin of the above. Ex: teenagers in Alaska that like T-shirts with green aliens; 45 year old women in the Bible Belt, who like quilts; wives needing to buy gifts for their ex-military husbands; etc, etc. I have a very hard time going down this road of targeting. I have millions of interests which constantly change, I keep discovering new things all the time, and want to share them with my friends and the world.

I guess my target audience will remain well-round persons with an international mind set. You are a special few.

Having said that – check out A site dedicated to getting Visas and finding international wives. My intelligence sources tell me that being focused and blogging about the above two points gets one thousands of daily hits and top search results showing in Google.

Perhaps I should start blogging on how to impress well-rounded persons and get them to give you a job or marry you..

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil Start-up Scene

I am certainly not an expert on start-ups, Brazil or the two topics combined, but I came to learn a few things, that I am happy to share.

I added a new page to my blog which I will update as I learn more.


Brazil Startup Deal Book

Anything you need to know about recent deals made

Accelerators in Rio (there are others, but these are the ones I hear most about):

Venture Capitals Firms:

  • I don’t know too much about them beyond what Google tells me, as I meet some people, I will update the list.

Government Programs:

Start-up Brasil – Selected companies will get up to R$200k, plus various other benefits and acceleration services.

Government Agencies:

  • Rio Negocios – Agency that promotes investments in Rio de Janeiro, launched recently Rio-Digital, a map of the scene in Rio, with accelerators, start-ups, investors, incubators and coffee shops with Wi-Fi (only 2 of those on the list so far 😦 )
  • FINEP -Funding Authority for Studies and Projects is under the Ministry of Science of Technology. There are various programs it administers. A specific one I saw was:  Prime, to support new businesses in their first year, giving R$120k for salaries and other administrative services plus favorable financing options. I mapped several other programs from the Ministry’s website, that may be relevant. Full spreadsheet is here. Amounts are in BRL.FINEP

Industry Associations

Sources of information:

  • StartupBase – Database of all the start ups in Brazil (“all” is kind of exaggerated, though)
  • The Next Web – Has a lot of current information on the scene
  • Rio – The Silicon Beach – an article from Reuters which was my initial catalyst

What are the projects on my mind?

Ever since I reached Brazil, I have had an infinite brainstorming session inside my head about things I want to do the near time that will make me happy. Thought I would list my top 15 here:

1. Write a book

2. Write a book with a friend (1 done, 1 to go – let me know if you know any publishers).

3. Open a hostel

4. Bring educational opportunities to Brazil (I think this is the number 1 problem in this country) – both for graduate level and for basic education.

5. Start an online business

6. Fall in-love

7. Read the increasing pile of books on my nightstand

8. Take all the possible courses on Coursera

9.  Make a difference in someone’s life

10. Travel to somewhere completely different

11. Learn how to cook something new

12. Discover new hidden places in Rio

13. Start a tourism-related business or join a tourism-related company

14. Learn French (Or Italian, or Japanese, or Swedish, etc.,)

15. Make my blog go viral

Start-Up Scene in China – and What about Brazil?

I completely forgot I was following Steve Blank’s blog, until I stumbled upon his notes on Chinese start-up scene.

As you say in Portuguese :Vale a pena.. (worthwhile)

Update: I overcame my laziness and started a new page about Brazil’s start-up scene. Focusing on Rio.