Tijuana Poised for Exponential Growth, Despite Political Uncertainty

By Bianca Wright, originally published on February 11, 2019.

Easy movement across the border to and from San Diego is key to Tijuana’s tech outsourcing attractiveness.

Situated just 18 miles from San Diego across one of the busiest land borders in the world, Tijuana has long been building its reputation as an attractive outsourcing destination. Almost 2.1 million people live in Mexico’s sixth-largest city, many of whom are U.S citizens. Many more cross the border daily for work and collaboration between the two cities has been core to transnational development. This easy movement is one of the key drivers for tech growth in the city and broader region.

Lonnie McRorey, Co-Founder and CTO of Framework Science, believes that the outlook for the tech sector in Tijuana is one of exponential growth – unless the current U.S administration makes it more difficult for US citizens to live in Tijuana and for Tijuanans to go to work in San Diego every day. “Border politics is a double-edged sword in my opinion,” McRorey says.

Retaining a Transnational Spirit

Mexico-US relations have been under pressure as continued rhetoric from the Tump administration has focused on the building of a border wall, to be paid for by Mexico – something the Mexican government has consistently reiterated it will not do. Opponents have challenged the President’s assertions.

Following his State of the Union address on February 5, El Paso, Texas mayor Dee Margo, a Republican, wrote in a column for USA Today: “We in El Paso, Texas, are a community that transcends the border. While some are concerned about our proximity to Mexico, we choose to celebrate it. While others embrace building a wall, we remind them a fence already exists.”

Similarly Andrea Guerrero, executive director of the community group Alliance San Diego, told the Guardian in December 2018 that “Tijuana and San Diego are one community, with one heart.” This transnational spirit remains strong in places along the border.

Despite this uncertainty, Tijuana remains poised for growth in the tech sector. Adriana Eguia Alaniz, Vice President of New Business at Vesta Industrial Real Estate, agrees, describing Tijauna’s tech developments as “a growing sector with a lot of potential for success.” Eguia is the former CEO of the Tijuana Economic Development Corporation and former Executive Director of the Cali Baja Bi-National Mega-Region.

More than 15 Los Angeles and San Diego start-ups have joined Framework Science as a result of the binational network. “It’s amazing how quickly San Francisco companies can get down to San Diego and cross the border to take an Uber to their site operations. Tijuana is basically South South San Diego,” McRorey says.

Sounding the Call for Tijuana Investment

Known initially for manufacturing and now for IT companies outsourcing their call center operations there, there are now a growing number of companies in Tijuana that are focusing on coding. Initiatives to draw companies in software, robotics and AI have sprung up, and, according to the San Diego Regional EDC, the rise of the innovation cluster and creation of incubators and new co-working spaces such as BitCenter and MindHub “foster the entrepreneurial spirit of locals.”

High-tech companies are now looking to Tijuana as an attractive option. “Gaming companies, high-tech medical device companies and so on, are now based in Tijuana and are looking to grow in this city with a lot of potential,” says Eguia.

However, Tijuana needs to ensure that its benefits are visible to the world. “There’s more to be done regarding positioning. People don’t know all the things that can be done here. Even though talent is available, companies are also bringing people from the South of Mexico that sometimes makes for a slower recruitment process. There’s no tech visa for Mexico, but the legislative process is running for Mexico to give the news for 2019,” says Eguia.

McRorey adds: “Mexico also boasts the highest numbers of STEM graduates across the American continent! Tijuana’s culture is binational by default, making it a hot spot for investments. Right now the real estate business and construction is booming.”

He explains that Tijuana is poised to be at the epicenter of transitional change as prime-country-city for cost-effective design/manufacturing and digital enterprise development outsourcing. “US companies are eyeing Mexico because of NAFTA and what it means for IP rights, and for the extreme proximity to the U.S,” he says, adding that Tijuana’s bi-cultural workforce makes it preferable to countries in Asia, for example.

The Need for Trusted Partners

He adds that Tijuana is primed for all types of outsourcing needs, from assembly and manufacturing to full product R&D. “Talent is drawn from Mexicali, Ensenada and Tecate thus the wide geographical dispersion makes it the ideal city for this type of boom in the next 10 years,” McRorey says. Mexico’s president’s agenda of lowering taxes and gasoline costs across the border with the US greatly incentivizes investments and business operational outsourcing opportunities.

Both agree that capitalizing on Tijuana’s attractiveness requires local knowledge and a good partner. “You need a trusted partner on the ground that can navigate business infrastructure and people operations. It is best to move to Tijuana for a few weeks or months to build a network,” McRorey says.

Eguia adds that you will need to be helped by an ecosystem expert or you can get lost to companies that may be not quality oriented. “There is also a lack of information if searching on the internet,” she cautions.

 

Original article: https://www.nearshoreamericas.com/tijuana-exponential-growth/

Queretaro in the Top ten Aerospace cities of tomorrow

(Article in spanish) by Ana De León / QuerétaroFebruary 2019

Con el objetivo de dar a conocer al sector industrial y a las entidades relacionadas con la industria aeroespacial en Querétaro y la región, el AeroClúster de Querétaro presentó su informe anual sobre las actividades realizadas en el 2018 y su plan de trabajo para el año 2019.

Juan Carlos Corral Martín, presidente del Aeroclúster de Querétaro, indicó que se siente satisfecho con los resultados obtenidos durante los primeros dos años que ha dirigido la institución.

“Cambiamos estatutos, hemos duplicado el comité directivo dando participación a más empresas, gracias a los trabajos llevados a cabo, el sector en general se ha dado cuenta de la importancia del AeroClúster”, destacó. La industria aeroespacial en Querétaro está integrada por 80 empresas; sin embargo, la membresía cerró el 2018 con 61 socios, de los cuales, el 68% corresponden a empresas, 47.5% grandes y 52.5% pymes, el 24% a la academia y el 8% a gobierno.

“Nuestro objetivo es que el 100% del sector participe, hemos presentado incrementos importantes, para este 2019 esperamos superar la cifra y llegar a un total de 70 agremiados”, detalló el presidente del AeroClúster de Querétaro.

Por su parte, Jorge Gutiérrez de Velasco Rodríguez, secretario del AeroClúster de Querétaro, mencionó que continuarán trabajando en la atracción de nuevas inversiones de la mano del gobierno federal.De acuerdo con la información publicada por la Secretaría de Desarrollo Sustentable, Norteamérica y Europa se posicionaron en 2018 como los principales destinos de exportación en el Estado. Además, indicaron que el 72% de la industria instalada en la región realiza procesos de manufactura, mientras que el 13% trabaja en diseño e ingeniería y el 11% en mantenimiento y reparación.

Entre los principales productos y servicios que ofrece se encuentran: aeroestructuras, tratamientos especiales, maquinado de componentes complejos de aeroestructuras, trenes de aterrizaje y motores, materiales compuestos, diseño e ingeniería, mantenimiento y reparación de aeronaves, así como motores, componentes y materias primas.

Querétaro se encuentra en el top 10 de ciudades aeroespaciales por el mejor desempeño en atracción de inversión extranjera directa, así como en el ranking mundial de ciudades aeroespaciales del futuro 2018/19 elaborado por la publicación fDi Intelligence.

José Antonio Velázquez Solís, director general del AeroClúster de Querétaro, indicó que durante el 2018 se logró la atracción de tres proyectos aeroespaciales que sumaron inversiones por 300 millones de pesos, así como la creación de 200 empleos en el Estado de Querétaro.

Durante su participación, Itziar Larrañaga, tesorera del AeroClúster de Querétaro, compartió estadísticas sobre el desempeño de las pymes que forman parte de la membresía.

 

Ventas anuales: $1.3 musd en 2017, y $1.87 musd en 2018 (+44%)

Exportaciones: 31% en 2017, 36% en 2018

Empleos directos: 58 en 2017, 82 en 2018 (+41%)

Certificaciones: 6 en 2017, 12 en 2018

Inspección de primer artículo: 27 en 2017, 158 en 2018.

Inversión en capacitación: 250 mil pesos (50% con apoyo de la SEDESU)

 

Perspectivas para 2019-2020

El AeroClúster anunció que espera lograr un crecimiento en la membresía, llegando a 70 miembros activos este 2019, además de aumentar a 30 el número de reuniones de comisiones.

“Uno de nuestros objetivos es continuar con el aumento de la facturación por encima de dos dígitos en porcentaje, contando con un crecimiento en el número de empleos directos que genera la industria aeroespacial, así como la atracción de nuevas inversiones aeroespaciales al Estado de Querétaro”, detalló José Antonio Velázquez Solís, director del AeroClúster de Querétaro.

Antes de concluir, Germán Borja Garduño, director de Desarrollo Industrial de la SEDESU, declaró que “este año trabajaremos para traer nuevas empresas a Querétaro, a nivel de Pymes queremos seguir creciendo buscamos mayor competitividad, incrementando el nivel de proveeduría, la generación de empleo, además de exportaciones a países en América del Norte y Europa”.

Original article: www.mexicoindustry.com

NAI Mexico Regional Meeting Event 2019

 

NAI Mexico Regional Meeting Event 2019, hosted in the city of Tijuana, Mexico

By Melissa Hubert at NAI Mexico.

The 23, 24 and 25 of January 2019 marked our Regional Meeting with the team from all the NAI Mexico offices and the kick off for the year ahead. The event was focused on launching 2019 and getting participation and workshops from experts in our sector.

On Wednesday we had the pleasure to receive Elisa Ibañez, a tax accountant specialist to present the Legal Tax Changes taking place along the US-Mexico border region and how it will affect and beneficiate our company as well as our clients and partners. Elizabeth Zamora, the commercial director of FINSA also gave a presentation focused on Industrial Developers and what they expect from brokers. The rest of the day was spent presenting case studies and workshops on the sales team.

On Thursday the members of the team presented themselves and their roles within the company. The digital marketing strategy, as well as the events in which the firm should participate, were discussed. Vesta Chief Commercial Officer Elias Laniado also gave a presentation regarding the developers’ needs from the brokers. The day was set to plan for the year and we concluded with a grand dinner for a better team building.

Finally, on Friday Matthew Smith from RealNex came to present the new CRM tool we’re set to use nationally, a tool specifically created to attend the needs of commercial real estate firms in the world. The Regional Meeting ended with an award ceremony for Sales/Staff person of the year, Sales/Staff Rising Stars of NAI Mexico, and a special Diamond Recognition for Gabriela Torres and Sandra Soto for their continued years of dedicated service and excellence.

To visit a picture gallery of the event, click here.
Thanks a lot for participating, we hope to see you at the next regional meeting!