When looking to invest in Mexico, the vastness of our Southern neighbor can be daunting. But before you take your small business international, there are a few questions you need to ask yourself. Where should you invest? What do you want to invest in?. To find the answers, lists of Mexico’s most populated regions aren’t going to cut it.
With that in mind, and to make the process of expanding abroad even easier, we’ve compiled a list of the top five industrial centers in Mexico, and where that industry is invested. Don’t go in blind.
5. Tijuana: Manufacturing, Automotive, Electronics
The largest city in Baja California, Tijuana has become one of the most rapidly expanding industrial centers in Mexico. Since the implementation of NAFTA in 1994, Tijuana’s economic focus has shifted from tourism to manufacturing. It’s now the home of assembly plants for companies like Samsung, Panasonic, and Sony. This makes Tijuana one of Mexico’s leading exporters of electronics, due in large part to its proximity to California and Silicon Valley.
This closeness has also made Tijuana one of Mexico’s largest car manufacturers. The auto parts industry in the region is still growing, making it an off-center, and therefore open market for small businesses to move into. This uptick in manufacturing has helped Tijuana add more than 80,000 new residents each year.
The auto parts industry in the region is still growing, making it an off-center, and therefore open market for small businesses to move into.
4. Ciduad Juarez: Manufacturing, Real Estate, Aerospace
Often considered one of the most dangerous cities in the world, Cd. Juarez is desperately trying to shed that identifier. The city has a fortunate geography, as it can ship both eastward and westward, as it lies at the approximate midpoint along the US-Mexico border. As with most Northern Mexican states, this gives Juarez the advantage of US proximity. Manufacturing, then, floats to the top of the economy of the region, with most of the industry involved in automotive, aerospace, and defense subsectors.
Interestingly, though, one of the most violent places in the world is also an industrial real-estate paradise. In fact, Cd. Juarez has the largest industrial real-estate market on the US-Mexico border, both in terms of square footage and employees. The US isn’t the only investor, either. Juarez’s industrial real-estate industry hosts companies from Japan, Taiwan, Germany, and even Sweden.
3. Monterrey: Steel, Software, Brewing
Monterrey is considered Mexico’s most “Americanized” city, as US residents have been known to move there because of business ties. It has taken a slight hit, but has gradually picked itself up thanks to a booming software sector, and established steel production. Monterrey is often considered Mexico’s academic center, with some of the country’s most prominent and highly ranked universities. As a result, Monterrey has become known as the IT and software center of Mexico, as engineering and computer science graduates flood the market.
Monterrey has become known as the IT and software center of Mexico, as engineering and computer science graduates flood the market.
The city is also the home of many breweries and is known as one of the top beer producers in the country, with 126-year-old Cuauhtémoc Moctezuma being housed there. Now owned by Heineken, the time-honored company produces Dos Equis, Tecate, Sol, and many others. This prominence in the market has made Monterrey a hub for big and small beer businesses alike.
2. Guadalajara: Manufacturing, Information Technology (IT)
While Juarez and other Northern states are benefiting from their proximity to Silicon Valley, Guadalajara may be next on the list. The information technology sector is booming in Guadalajara, and businesses on both sides of the border are starting to take notice. Some of the world’s biggest IT companies have set up in Guadalajara, including Toshiba, IBM, HP, and Intel. This is because of the city’s diverse and strong economy, and the region’s reputation as the best job training center in in the county’s Western region.
This regional development has brought many, especially US, foreign investors along with it. The state governor of Jalisco, the region whose capital is Guadalajara, has begun to entice more US tenants into the area in response to the recently reworked US immigration policy. In fact, hiring policies look to target US techies that can’t find work at home. The manufacturing and IT upside in the area is massive.
1. Mexico City: Service, Manufacturing, Finance
It had to end this way, didn’t it? As the capital, Mexico City is the economic backbone of the country. It produces revenue from diverse sources including tourism, and the “informal” economy of street vendors and others. However, its high population and central geography make Mexico City a different kind of economy than previous cities.
Manufacturing, while still important, has been steadily pushed out of the city. This has made way for an influx in the service economy, cut pollution, and boosted the economies of neighboring cities who now house those factories. This industry has been replaced by banks, financial services, restaurants, hotels, and entertainment centers. Mexico City is developing into one of the world’s financial capitals, housing numerous national and international banks. Many companies, foreign and domestic, have headquarters there, making the city a focal point for corporate activity.
industry has been replaced by banks, financial services, restaurants, hotels, and entertainment centers
As this list has shown, the Mexican economy has increasingly diversified since the introduction of NAFTA. You’ll also find that the misconceptions about Mexican work are just that. The country is moving to invest in lucrative industries such as IT, finance, and software. Diversification means big things for small business, as US companies have more options than ever when looking to the international marketplace.
Veem can help you establish your small business in one of the world’s most rapidly expanding economies by securely, quickly, and cost effectively transferring your money to and from our Southern neighbors. Avoid the fees and hassle of sending money through your bank. Let us here at Veem make your international business a reality.