Brazil’s Next 10 Hottest Business Cities – 2013 Edition

By Arnout Nuijt

Ever heard of Uberlândia, Joinville, Ribeirão Preto or Londrina? Well, you may soon, as they are among Brazil’s next generation of big business cities.

Rodoviária de Londrina - Ft: Milton Dória - 2004 2013 (FIND THE 2014 EDITION HERE) – No doubt the biggest and most important business centres of Brazil are the megacities of São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. Further afield, most other state capitals full fill their role as the country’s other main economic centres: Belo Horizonte, Salvador da Bahia, Recife, Fortaleza, Curitiba and Porto Alegre. These are the cities that are dominating Brazil’s economic development. On top of that most of these capitals will be in the world’s spotlight as host cities of the 2014 World Cup and one, Rio, will even host the Olympic Games of 2016.

But Brazil is big and there are plenty of other fast developing cities that have become important business hubs over the years and will be ever more important in the future. They did not get there with soccer tournaments or because held their state’s government, but by generating strong growth in private sectors such as agribusiness, oil & gas, industries, IT and ports & logistics.

Readers of Brazil Weekly have been asked to give their opinion about the order of importance of these next big business cities in a poll that ran throughout the past year. Well, here they are, lined up after your interests and voting. So for a minute forget São Paulo, Rio and those other 2014 World Cup host cities, as here come Brazil’s Next 10 Hottest Business Cities: Continue reading “Brazil’s Next 10 Hottest Business Cities – 2013 Edition”

City Brief: Sao Paulo

By Arnout Nuijt

Writing a City Brief about Brazil’s biggest city, its economic powerhouse and home of the country’s cultural, business and political elite, is not easy. São Paulo is simply to big to grasp, as is its impact on Brazil, South America and, no doubt, the rest of the world. The economic heart of the country beats soundly in this urban center of around 20 million people (10% of the national population). Within the city proper around 11 million people are residing. The city is the capital of Brazil’s most important state, also called São Paulo, that, if independent, would be part of the G20 by itself. In fact, the metropolitan region is among the world’s top ten mega cities. Yes, there are endless poor neighborhoods, where migrants from other parts of the country and their descendants slug it out, but you will also find some of the most luxurious and sophisticated housing estates in the world, home to Brazil’s elite. São Paulo is a so called global city. A trend setting Arts Biennial complete the picture.

There are several things you should know about São Paulo when you come down for business, which is the main reason people visit the city. First there is its amazing history, in which São Paulo, though no doubt the most dynamic region of Brazil, experienced a series of political setbacks though managed to get the upper hand in economic terms. For centuries São Paulo was a small colonial town, founded by Jesuit priests on the highlands behind Santos and São Vicente, two of the oldest Portuguese settlements on the coast. From the town groups of settlers fanned out in all directions to explore the interior.

In a very early stage some Paulistas (the nickname of people from São Paulo state, those from the city are called Continue reading “City Brief: Sao Paulo”

Weekend Break in Guarujá

By Arnout Nuijt

guarujahotelWhen you are visiting São Paulo for business you will inevitably get tired of your many meetings and not to mention the heavy traffic in this city of 11 million. Even when business goes well, you may need to unwind and relax. So, where to go when you are in an endless megacity like São Paulo? With a little effort you can get to the coast, where you have many options. But to get to Ubatuba or Ilha Bela, two of São Paulo state’s most wanted resort towns, just takes too long for a weekend. Driving down there costs at least four hours each way. As you will leave the city at the earliest on Friday afternoon and you will have to be back for your next week’s round of meetings by Sunday night, this is not a good option. So, in order to have maximum profit of your weekend, cut down on the travel time and head for Guarujá!

Guarujá is a relatively large resort town on Santos Bay, built to accommodate Paulistana holidaymakers and rich folk who want to enjoy living on the beach. Depending on traffic, it’s a one to one and a half hour drive from São Paulo. A taxi will Continue reading “Weekend Break in Guarujá”