US investments, totaling more than $ 330 million as of April 2021, are driving the recovery of the capital’s economy. International companies and trade organizations highlight what Bogota offers that continues to captivate North American companies.
Bogota works so that in 2021 the arrival of Foreign Direct Investment projects can resume its growth and move to the levels registered before the start of the pandemic. Estimates by the investment promotion agency Invest in Bogota indicate that this year the flows of new and expansion FDI in the Bogota Region could grow between 26% and 38%, an encouraging figure that is in line with the economic recovery expected for the capital.
In this challenge of attracting FDI to the city, the United States appears as one of the markets that maintains its confidence in the capital and that is boosting the arrival of investment in the capital.
Only between January and April of this year, 15 projects arrived in Bogota Region with investment flows from the United States for approximately US $ 333 million. Bogota is also the epicenter of foreign investment in Colombia, since in the same period it concentrated almost 80% of the projects that the country received from the North American nation.
“Historically, the United States has been the country that contributes the most investment to the Bogota Region, with important projects that have also boosted the social development of the capital”, highlights the acting executive director of Invest in Bogota, Mauricio Romero, who also reveals that the US investment that has come to the city this year has generated more than 820 direct jobs.
The impact of foreign investment from the United States is multiplied when analyzing the projects that the capital has received in the last five years. Figures from Invest in Bogota estimate that between 2016 and 2020, Bogota Region received close to US $ 2,646 million for the development of 187 projects, with a job creation that exceeds 18,600 positions.
Within this period, the most important year was 2019, presenting a total of 49 projects, generating 8,200 jobs, and receiving amounts of US $ 942 million. For Romero, the volume of projects that the city is receiving during 2021 allows us to see the future with optimism in terms of investment, especially given the potential that the city has shown to attract nearshoring projects.
“The strategy that we are developing so that companies in markets such as the United States can relocate their operations and, from here, serve other markets in the region, will allow the city to continue to shine and remain a benchmark for investment in Latin America in the coming years”, adds the director of Invest in Bogota.
What attracts American companies?
The list of American companies that have come to the city in recent years, or that have made new investments to expand their operations, includes giants such as HBO, Amazon, WeWork, Hubspot, Sutherland, Medtronic or Zemoga.
Regarding the reasons why these types of companies have decided to invest in Bogota, Maria Claudia Lacouture, director of AmCham Colombia, highlights, among others, the existence of a modern and comprehensive FTA, a stable macroeconomy, with an attractive domestic market and a strategic geographic location.
“Bogotá is a vigorous, modern capital that offers multiple advantages for companies, including, but not limited to modern free zones with facilities, trained human resources, connectivity and infrastructure that makes it easier for many companies to have the city as a hub for operations, as an export platform for goods and services to quickly connect with all destinations”, adds Lacouture.
When analyzing the economic sectors that are leading the attraction of investment from the United States, corporate services companies, added to software and IT companies, appear as those that concentrate a large part of the projects.
One of the American companies that recently invested in Bogota is Auxis, a firm based in South Florida that has been in the market for more than 24 years and that offers consulting and outsourcing services to leading companies around the world in more than 10 industries. Auxis is currently opening a BPO and ITO shared services center in Bogota for finance and accounting, customer service, RPA, software development and IT operations, including technical support and infrastructure / cloud functions.
The company plans to hire more than 50 positions in the next 6 months in Colombia and, although some of these positions may be hired remotely, most of them will be based in the city of Bogota.
“I think Bogotá is a great choice. The fact that there are so many multinationals in the city that have managed to establish themselves and be successful in recent years is a great indicator that we can open operations in the city and find the necessary bilingual talent”, highlights Lizzie Arroyo, Vice President of Human Resources and Administration in Auxis.