Clark Grue
CEO
Rainmaker Global Market Access
Gabriel Parrodi, Country Manager, Rainmaker Global Market Access
Gabriel Parrodi
Country Manager
Rainmaker Global Market Access
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View from the Top

Mexico an Ideal Businesses Location Amid Nearshoring

By Sofía Garduño | Wed, 08/17/2022 - 16:04

Q: How relevant have Rainmaker’s offerings become amid the reconfiguration of supply chains?

CG: Globalization is not growing as fast as regional and local economies. This is impacting a number of things that have benefited our business. There is a large desire and need for information. Supply chains are also changing following the concept of “buy local” but we cannot buy everything locally; sometimes we have to go to global markets. The buy local mentality is creating opportunities. For example, being within the North American region has been beneficial for Mexico. Some companies are still expanding overseas but the convenience of regional economies is becoming more relevant.

GP: We are a consulting firm and a business facilitator. Rainmaker provides market knowledge, especially to Canadian automotive corporations. Through our Market Access Coalition (MAC), we offer market access to a group of companies. We can also add value to companies that would like to expand to new markets with our knowledge and expertise in the industry.  

Q: What challenges is Rainmaker facing while identifying profit-forward opportunities across regions during post-pandemic times?

CG: The mindset in North America regarding the global marketplace is different from the EU’s due to the different dynamics of the market, which creates many interesting challenges and opportunities. There is sometimes a protectionist mentality in the region, but in Rainmaker’s opinion,  there is a need to think about scale globally and not just locally. Most companies that want to grow need markets like Mexico, where they can leverage their strengths to scale up their businesses. North America and other parts of the world are looking to Mexico for supply chain support.

GP: It will take some time for the world to truly overcome the pandemic. Supply chains have been affected. The pandemic will completely change the future of business, specifically in North America amid the nearshoring and reshoring of the supply chain. Large corporations, like auto manufacturers, have identified the problems involved in sourcing raw materials from far away. Companies that have invested in the past to allocate their facilities in markets like Asia or the EU are rethinking their strategies to have raw materials closer to manufacturing facilities. The times are changing and we have to accept that and adapt to this reality.

Q: What do companies need to understand about the Mexican context to better do business in the country?

GP: A few weeks ago, the Taiwan ambassador in Mexico hosted five companies interested in opportunities in Mexico to have their supply chain closer to the market and production. Investment in Mexico did not stop during the pandemic. People from Germany, Japan and China are looking at the automotive industry. If companies go to a new market, they need to understand it well and this is where Rainmaker plays a large role because we are the eyes of the company in a completely unknown market. In the past, we introduced Mexican suppliers to the Canadian market to substitute Chinese alternatives. We succeeded in this and we maintained a friendly relationship because it was a large opportunity for Canadians to get better sourcing from Mexico directly.

Q: What interest does the global market have in Mexico’s agriculture industry and what role has Rainmaker’s MAC Agritech played in the development of this industry?

CG: There is a disruption of food movement as a result of the war in Ukraine. Mexico has significant opportunities for agriculture. The US and Canada import a large number of vegetables from Mexico year-round. In Canada, especially in the winter, we look to Mexico to grow many fruits and vegetables.

Agritech companies are producing healthy, clean produce at a faster pace without putting strain on the ground. Technologies around strategic cropping and soil remediation are highly valuable in this sector. Canada and Mexico for instance have very different agricultural methods and infrastructure. Companies involved in the MAC Agritech space become global quickly because they can take technologies around crop science, fertilizer science and food packaging and apply them everywhere.

Q: What is Mexico lacking to improve its attractiveness as an investment destination?

CG: Mexico is not lacking anything significant. There are many reasons behind a company’s decision to come to Mexico, such as the market opportunity and industry regulations. Mexico already is a welcoming place. Many Canadians and Europeans know about its tourist offering but they do not necessarily think of Mexico beyond that. Our team is quite excited about business opportunities in Mexico. We are learning as fast as we can to be able to elevate business opportunities in Mexico to our clients. Overall, Mexico needs to find ways to partner effectively without feeling threatened by foreign investment.

Q: What goals does Rainmaker expect to achieve by the end of 2022 globally and in Mexico?

CG: While industries are regionalizing, they are still globally integrated. The COVID-19 pandemic taught us how connected we are around the world. We have gained a significant advantage in being able to communicate in a meaningful way through video calls. However, in-person meetings are also essential to gain trust. We have 50 Rainmakers scattered around the world and hopefully by the end of 2022, we will be up to 65. Every new Rainmaker opens up that market for us. That exchange of business activity is Rainmaker’s goal.

GP: In Mexico, we just started the MAC for the automotive and agriculture and tourism industries. We recently were approached by a company that wants to complete a large real estate development that involves a “conscious community.” We will soon bring more investments to Mexico for the automotive industry. We have also talked with Canadian agribusiness companies with technical expertise to improve Mexico’s agricultural industry. We also provide webinars for potential investors, manage their agenda and receive them. This year, we will bring 10 companies to the Mexican market.

 

Rainmaker is a global organization of business facilitators that connects companies with qualified business opportunities around the world. It accelerates clients’ growth by leveraging key data sources, local knowledge, relationships and international partnerships in key economic markets.

Sofía Garduño Sofía Garduño Journalist & Industry Analyst