What do you really know about Brazil? It's the land of samba, deadly caipirinha cocktails, soccer legends, and beaches that go on forever — right?
This is all true, but there is a lot more to this country than meets the eye. Brazil managed to ride out the global economic slowdown, for a start. Though the GDP growth in Brazil is now fairly modest compared to 2010, it's still positive — which is more than what most mature and developed economies can say.
Every IT supplier from Boston to Bangalore is making inroads and learning how to sell to Brazilian CIOs.
And if you don’t know about the vibrant technology industry in Brazil, then you should — and I hope this blog will be a place you will regularly return to as I'm going to be reporting on what's happening across all areas of technology.
At the end of 2012, the Brazilian software and IT services business employed over 600,000 people, creating revenues of $71.6 billion. This is not an industry that has sprung up overnight to take on the IT outsourcers in India. The IT industry has been around for decades in Brazil, going through the same growth cycle as that of the USA, from enormous mainframes to PCs, tablets, and semiconductors.
This is a mature industry that has generally existed under the radar of the rest of the world because most of the business was taking place locally. Government or local companies have been commissioning big IT projects with local players. But now, the Brazilian market has become so attractive, every IT supplier from Boston to Bangalore is making inroads and learning how to sell to Brazilian CIOs.
Last year, over 35,000 Brazilian students graduated from higher education courses focused in some way on IT services, more than half of them in the densely populated south east of the country. But even with a larger number of students taking technology courses, one of the main IT trade bodies in Brazil, Apeti, predicts that by 2020, there will be a deficit of around 220,000 IT professionals in the country.
The eyes of the world are really on Brazil at present. The FIFA soccer world cup is in Brazil next year, and the famous Maracanã stadium just reopened last week after several years of renovation. The Olympic games will come to Rio in 2016. And Brazil is a leading member of the Brics, which is starting to become a global force in world trade with the recently announced Brics development bank.
Are you working in IT and looking for a new opportunity? How about learning Portuguese and heading south to try taking one of those jobs? This isn't a market where people are just glad to have a job in IT. This is a place where group buying and crowd sourcing is normal, and social network adoption is second only to the USA. And there are just not enough IT experts to go around.