BARRIO (Hola) – The 2023 Forbes 30 Under 30 Summit was nothing short of spectacular, with diverse young talents from around the world showcasing their innovation, passion, and dedication to making a difference. Among the notable attendees were supermodel Kendall Jenner and reggaeton superstar Bad Bunny, supporting the groundbreaking achievements of emerging companies like Selia.
One of the highlights of the Summit was the Forbes Under 30 Latinx Pitch Competition, where startups vied for recognition and investment. Amidst fierce competition, Selia, a mental health platform dedicated to connecting Spanish-speaking individuals with certified psychologists, emerged as the winner, securing a significant prize of $300,000. Remarkably, $100,000 of that sum came directly from the generous pockets of Bad Bunny himself.
In front of an excited audience at the Under 30 Summit, Bad Bunny, who had actively participated as a judge, announced, “Though everyone here was worthy of winning, we decided that Selia is the winner!” His endorsement validated Selia’s innovative approach and emphasized the importance of mental health support within the Latinx community.
Judging Criteria and Selia’s Success
The pitch competition was judged by a distinguished panel, which included Parade founder Cami Téllez, EVERY cofounder Arturo Elizondo, and Reach Capital partner Jomayra Herrera—each of them being Under 30 alumni.
They evaluated the startups based on scalability, market need, and the “fire” that sets them apart. Selia, pitched by cofounder and chief product officer Jaime Castro, impressed the judges.
One key factor that set Selia apart was its innovative and cost-effective approach to acquiring customers and psychologists for its platform. Castro explained, “Acquiring providers has been much easier than acquiring customers; we’re not spending any money acquiring the specialists.” This approach ensures a steady pool of qualified mental health professionals and keeps operational costs in check.
Selia’s Vision for the Future
With the substantial funding they received from the Forbes 30 Under 30 Summit, Selia now has its sights set on a bold mission: addressing the unmet mental health needs of the Latinx population across Latin America and the United States. According to Castro, an estimated 65 million Latinx people lack access to adequate mental health services, and Selia is determined to bridge this gap.
The funding injection will enable Selia to expand its reach and further develop its platform, making quality mental health care accessible to a diverse and underserved community. Their innovative approach and commitment to making a difference in many’s lives have earned them recognition and the support of influential figures like Bad Bunny.