|Brasscom Global IT Forum Super Panel in São Paulo 2011|
As you may know, Portuguese is one of the most spoken languages in the world, with nearly 240 millions worldwide. It is presented in the 5 continents and its growth may be related to the development of the Brazilian market. Portugal and Angola also have some influence, however European, Asian and American companies have seen Brazil as an opportunity to expand their business due to its economic boom.
I have been working closely with some European and American multinationals based in Dublin and they are currently preparing employees to deal exclusively with the land of 'Samba' and 'football', especially regarding IT and service providers. Therefore, I would like to present you three import facts that can be seen as a great business opportunity.
- Brazilian Companies are looking for IT solutions. Private and public sectors are currently spending an estimate of 70 billions a year on IT, which represents an enormous opportunity for those devoted to explore this market. The Indian company Mahinda Satyam have seen this opportunity. They have entered as a joint venture and are currently managing more than 100 client and an average of 500 employees. The 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympic Games are driving these numbers even further. The demand for solutions is unique and there is a scarcity of qualified employees to deal with these industries.
- Brazilians don't speak English. A survey carried out by the British Council states that just 5% of Brazilians are able to speak English fluently. With a population of nearly 200 000 000, this can be a hindrance to any company entering into the country. To address the problem, the Government is trying to hire more teacher and increase the hourly load in schools for foreign language studies. The process, however will take years to be fully fulfilled.
- You will stand out. If your next summer destination is Brazil, It's time to learn. You will see the country in such a different way. Brazilian are keen on sharing their experiences and culture, especially if you decide to visit the countryside. If you are able to integrate to the culture, easier will be the adaptation process and amazing business opportunities may arise from that.
All in all, most of the English native speakers are learning a second European language as French and Spanish, however by learning Portuguese you can rapidly develop your knowledge in these languages as they have Latin base roots. Portuguese can be seen as a stepping stone to acquire a new language.