Mexico has all the right ingredients for an e-commerce boom: a young, tech-savvy population, rapidly increasing Internet penetration, and access to the world’s biggest e-commerce retailers, namely Amazon, Walmart, and Alibaba. In fact, Amazon and Alibaba have been vying for territory in Mexico’s e-commerce space for the past three years, betting on explosive growth.
While Mexico accounts for 12.6% of Latin America’s online purchases, only 1.6% of Mexico’s retail spending is conducted online. As Latin America’s second-largest e-commerce market, Mexico is poised for an online retail boom as Internet services reach more and more of the population.
Mexico’s strategic location close to the United States has a lot to do with this market’s growth potential. As one of three partners in the US$1.2 trillion NAFTA trade deal, Mexico is uniquely well-connected to the US and Canada, making international e-commerce much more available to the population.
With startup hubs across Latin America vying to become the next Silicon Valley, Mexico may be ahead of the game, and carving out its own niche south of the border. In 2015, TechCrunch published an article that argued that Mexico’s transition over to the innovation economy might just turn it into one of the world’s biggest economies in the next decade. Bismarck Lepe, a Mexican-American entrepreneur who pioneered Mexico-Silicon Valley cross border companies with Ooyala and now Wizeline, contends that Mexico is one of, if not the most interesting country in the world over the next decade.
Mexico’s unique geographic and cultural positioning allows it to capture both the US and the Latin American markets, while its size and natural resources allow it to compete with South American giants like Brazil.
Three major cities in Mexico – Mexico City, Monterrey, and Guadalajara – are at the forefront of the innovative movement and each city is contributing intensely to the growth of the startup ecosystem in Mexico.
While Mexico City is the most powerful due to its size and the availability of private and federal capital, Guadalajara and Monterrey are important second cities that are vying for technology and startup leadership. Here’s a deeper look at the startup ecosystems in each of these Mexican cities. (more…)
Nestor de Haro grew up in Guadalajara, where he learned about the auto parts industry from his father. After obtaining a B.S. Degree in Industrial Engineering, Nestor co-founded Rigs Inc, an online marketplace for selling auto parts in Latin America. We talk about his inflection point from an underperforming business model to a new marketplace model and his advice for other entrepreneurs who are just getting started. If you speak Spanish, be sure to stay tuned after the normal outro, as I am testing a new segment where I put new content in Spanish after we finish the English section of the podcast. I hope you enjoy this conversation I have with Nestor de Haro.
I asked Cristobal Perdomo to join me on this episode of crossing borders to talk about venture capital in Latin America. Cristobal is one of the founders of Jaguar Ventures, a Latin American based VC firm.
After getting an MBA and consulting for a couple of large companies in Brazil, he realized that the VC world was largely ignoring the rest of LatAm, so he set about to expand funding opportunities for startups in Argentina and Mexico. He shares advice for managing a business in multiple countries, investing in startups across the region and tips for managing teams across borders.