Lisbon, 21 June 2023 – Portugal Ventures, a venture capital firm that is part of Portuguese promotional bank Grupo Banco Português de Fomento, is pleased to announce its investment in two companies – MyCareForce and De Risk International, in the total amount of €1.7 million, to help them take their businesses global.
Teresa Fiúza, Vice President of Portugal Ventures, says “we are very proud to announce the addition of MyCareForce and De Risk International to our portfolio, the first two investments that set an example in the need for a clear response to a market failure – investing in/financing companies looking to expand to new markets and/or establish their business and enter the European market from Portugal. MyCareForce and De Risk International will work very closely with our team to continue to create the conditions to enhance the value and profitability of their business across borders.”
MyCareForce, led by Pedro Cruz Morais and João Hugo Silva, is a platform that connects healthcare professionals to available shifts, optimising the recruitment process from sourcing to payment. Health units face difficulties in hiring and retaining staff, while the latter have difficulty in finding opportunities that meet their needs. Traditional hiring methods are no longer adequate and so MyCareforce has designed a solution to solve this problem. MyCareForce will use this investment to begin its expansion to the Brazilian market. Shilling, Demium and Humberto Ayres Pereira, an angel investor and part of the Accel Starter programme co-invested in the operation.
De Risk International, a South African-originated company led by lawyer Marc Johnstone, specialises in rewards risk coverage solutions and platforms within the consumer marketing, promotion and loyalty programmes industry, delivering effective programmes and campaigns tailored to the requirements of each client. With more than 20 years of experience and a fully solution-based approach focused on achieving its clients’ goals and objectives, De Risk is not only a leading provider, but also a key partner for its clients and business partners. The investment from Portugal Ventures was used to establish a company in Portugal, the starting point for entry into the European market and replicating the successful business model from South Africa. Headquartered out of Portugal, with business development offices in South Africa, the Netherlands and Argentina, and representing some of the world’s biggest brands, De Risk International enables a global marketing solution for its clients.
To address the market failure identified, in March Portugal Ventures launched the first edition of Call Expand, aimed at investing in innovative projects developed by tech companies in the expansion phase. Submissions closed on 31 May. Thirty-seven applications were received with an investment potential of €34.5 million.