A diverse, expansive, and still-growing region, where economic and political turmoil are rife—there are many opportunities for brands to drive progress, and many challenges too.Decades of underdevelopment have created gaps in infrastructure, basic services, retail, health, education, and finance. There’s also a significant disconnect between developed urban centers, still-growing cities, and remote rural regions. However, as connectivity grows, brands are stepping in to bridge these crucial divides.
Fintech pioneers like the Argentinian Breakthrough Brand Ripio and Brazil’s Breakthrough veteran Nubank are using blockchain and digital technology to provide access to credit and other financial services—especially for younger consumers who are beginning to spend more. Within small-to-medium cities, brands are also finding opportunities to evolve along with local infrastructures. Colombia’s one-to-watch Rappi is developing mobility solutions into their models, building efficient, on-demand delivery fleets. And as populations age, Brazil-based Cora is promoting better living for seniors, lowering costs, and amping up quality of care.
While innovation is growing in LatAm, limited access to education, funds, and government support can be a challenge. Growing brands are cultivating a spirit of entrepreneurship throughout the region.
Brazil’s Descomplica recognizes that knowledge is power—it’s democratizing quality, affordable education to power people and ideas. Mexico’s popular crowdfunding platform Fondeadora has helped to launch more than 2,393 successful projects and recently partnered with crowdfunding pioneer Kickstarter. Mexican brands also prove that local tradition and innovation can go hand in hand—like Someone Somewhere, which gives indigenous artisans a beautiful platform to create and sell wares to the world.
The LatAm landscape is not always amenable to entrepreneurs who lack significant investment sources from companies or private investors. In an environment where support comes from within, Breakthrough Brands will be the ones that fan the spirit of growth throughout the region.
Political tensions have encouraged many Mexican brands to innovate at home, as consumers show increased loyalty toward local versus US-based brands.
Looking beyond Brazil
With a language, culture, and 200-plus population of its own, Brazil has traditionally focused within, but as connections expand, Brazil brands are seeking growth throughout the LatAm region.
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