Understanding Tech Penetration In Latin America

Latin America itself “represents close to 20% of Facebook’s user base,” and “Brazil and Mexico accounted for 70 million users or a whopping 38 percent of its user base,” for the Whatsapp app.  “With only 10 percent of the worldwide Internet audience, and less than 9 percent of the gross world product, Latin America could appear to many as insignificant. Yet, shining a spotlight on Brazil, just to highlight one country, gets you a radically different picture. Brazil’s population of 200 million, and over 240 million SIM connections leads it to outperform the world in terms of mobile penetration and carries the highest SIM-to-subscriber ratio (currently at 2.1 to 1).”

In this article, published on the Techcrunch.com website, it describes “six things entrepreneurs will have to accept to be successful in the Latin American market — a fascinating yet notoriously tricky region of the world.” 

These include:

Address the wireless carriers early – To say that the wireless industry is a cornerstone of Latin America is an understatement. While in developed countries like the U.S. and Europe, the mobile industry represents roughly around 2 percent of the economy, in Latin America it ranges from 4 percent to 5 percent and, furthermore, it is a very different animal.

Partner with media and local governments – Commuting times in Latin America rank as one of the worst in the world. It was this dynamic that led Moovit to partner with the local authorities and with the largest media players O’Globo to become the de-facto traffic information tool for Brazilians.

Leverage the enormous infatuation with sports – Should you be thinking that a World Cup was a one-time event for Brazil, perhaps you should Google when the next Fla-Flu game is (Flamengo vs. Fluminense rivalry is analogous to that of the Yankees vs. Red Sox), or check out where the next Summer Olympic Games will be held. Someone once told me that in many ways, Brazil has a Super Bowl every week, and I have to agree with that.

Be social – With more than 85 million Facebook users and around 15 million Twitter accounts growing at 25 percent per year, it’s no wonder the Wall Street Journal called Brazil “The Social Media Capital of the Universe.” Brazilians spend on social media networks more time per month than anyone else in the world.

Learn from the locals – Latin American Startups have a canny ability to take a proven business model, and execute like crazy to improve on it.

Don’t think of it as one single region – With over 45 countries, 620 million people, multiple cultures, languages and dialects, Latin America is a very diverse region. Referring to Latin America in singular form, and taking a cookie-cutter approach without considering the intricacies and complexities among its countries would ignore its rich diversity and likely position you for failure.  However, changes in skills and tactics, and partnerships will be necessary to capitalize and win in this market and reap the benefits like others have.

To read the entire article, click the following link.

Occasio team




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