When people think of doing business in Brazil, they think of Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo. But Brazil is filled with important cities that offer advantages for new businesses. Some of the cities that aren’t mentioned by foreign companies that often are Porto Alegre, Belo Horizonte, Recife, Fortaleza, Campinas, Bahia, and Curitiba. Those cities along with Florianopolis and Victory dominate Brazil’s economic development surge.
Marcio Alaor, the Vice-President and Director of BMG Bank, recently told a group of investors that Endeavor, the organization that supports entrepreneurs, released an index of 32 of the most entrepreneurial cities in Brazil, and the cities mentioned above were at the top of the list. Alaor is a native of Belo Horizonte, so he has experienced the growth of that city first-hand.
When Marcio went to work for BMG bank, the bank was based in the state of Minas Gerais, which is where Belo Horizonte is located. But thanks to the incredible growth that BMG Bank has experience over the last 18 years, the bank moved to Sao Paulo in order to be closer to some of the businesses that support the bank. BMG Bank is a leader in the consignment credit industry thanks to Alaor’s dedication to the bank.
Alaor said the Endeavor index specifically mentions Florianopolis, Victory, São Paulo, Campinas, and Recife as the top five cities that offer businesses the infrastructure, regulatory environment, innovation thinking, access to capital markets, and entrepreneurial culture.
The best business city in Brazil is still São Paulo according to the Endeavor index. Alaor said São Paulo has more than 60 percent of all the venture capital investments in the country, but the city is not without challenges. The most important challenge is in the human capital arena. But the other top four cities have human capital in place, but there are always trade-offs that companies that set up businesses in those cities must adjust to like local taxes, the bureaucracy that may hinder foreign advancements and the location of the city.
One of the main advantages of a new business venture in one of the top cities is the economic downturn that has thrown Brazil into the worst recession since 1901. Most cities welcome outside investors and businesses in order to help the country pull out of the economic mess that is playing havoc with the budgets of cities all over the country, according to Mr. Alaor.