Our Entrepreneurs

Carlos Balma

B2

Carlos Balma Carlos Balma
“I saw an opportunity to integrate premium events planning with a marketing platform for top brands.”
Country
Brazil
Industry
Business/Professional Services
Employees
74
Year selected
2011
partners
Felipe Ribeiro, Ricardo Librach Buckup
Website

Company Snapshot

Founded in 2002, B2 organizes premium graduation events for Brazil’s universities and serves as a marketing platform for brands and advertisers to access Brazil’s burgeoning youth market through interactive marketing opportunities. B2 provides university students with a convenient way to throw well-executed, large-scale, logistically complicated graduation celebrations. B2 eases the administrative burden of organizing such events and has built up a reputation of high quality execution. Services include graduation celebrations as well as youth and promotional marketing. B2 derives revenue equally from brands and advertisers; and event fees paid by students. Students and their invited guests pay per ticket for graduation events, and only brands and advertisers pay for the University Social Network and Promotional Marketing.
When Ricardo Buckup and Carlos Balma graduated from university, they wanted to celebrate the occasion with their families, but Brazil’s universities did not sponsor graduation celebrations. Left to their own devices, Ricardo and Carlos then spearheaded a committee to organize a reception for their graduating class. The event was so successful that the idea for building a company was born. Rather than work for established multinationals, Ricardo and Carlos took the less traveled entrepreneurial route. As recent graduates of the business program at Fundação Getulio Vargas (FGV), Ricardo and Carlos were top recruits in their class with promising job prospects. For his senior thesis, Ricardo had written an events company business plan, and the graduation celebration he organized with Carlos was such a success that he became convinced of the idea’s business potential. He rejected an offer from Roland Berger Strategy Consultants while Carlos left his job at Merrill Lynch so that they could start B2 officially.

They have since turned graduation celebrations into a business by founding B2. The company quickly became São Paulo’s go-to brand for premium graduation events, and it has since evolved into a premier marketing firm giving brands and advertisers unique access to Brazil’s burgeoning youth market. B2 is now positioned as a marketing platform helping brands and advertisers reach the youth demographic with a client base that includes General Motors, Gatorade, Bacardi, Chevrolet, Axe and so many more. In addition to their financial success, they are building a truly great company as B2 was recognized in 2011 by Great Place to Work as the 2nd best marketing firm.

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