By Sophia Wood, Launchway Media
Famous for its tango, steak, and Parisian flair, Buenos Aires is also a bustling tech hub. The city is the birthplace of many of Latin America’s most successful startups, including Argentina’s four unicorns. Just last year, the Macri administration passed a new Entrepreneur’s Law that dramatically simplified the process of creating a business in Argentina, lowering the number of days needed from 24 to one. This new legislation, along with the local government’s explicit support of entrepreneurship programs like IncuBAte, have turned Buenos Aires into an ideal location for launching a startup.
Here are four other reasons to launch your startup in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
1. The entrepreneurial community is supportive.
When Lisa Besserman, founder of Startup Buenos Aires, arrived in the Argentine capital in 2012, the local startup community was fractured, scattered, and disorganized. Nonetheless, she was inspired by the resilience of Argentina’s entrepreneurs, who had survived several financial meltdowns and political regime changes and still built global businesses. She decided to leave her tech job in New York to stay in Buenos Aires and create Startup Buenos Aires, an organization that provides educational and community activities to the city’s scrappy entrepreneurs. She notes:
“Buenos Aires is not only home to some of the most innovative entrepreneurs in the world, but also incredible tech talent as well. The human capital in the city really sets it apart from other startup hubs around the globe. We’ve also seen a strong emergence of startup communities and organizations, such as Startup Buenos Aires, ASEA and BA Emprende, which have helped strengthen and connect the local startup ecosystem.
The city and national government recognize the power of entrepreneurship and have created various programs fostering, educating and funding startups within Argentina. Whether you’re a startup looking to offshore IT teams and projects, a founder interested in breaking into the Latam market, or a digital nomad looking for your next destination, Buenos Aires is a unique city that will certainly not disappoint.”
Beyond Startup Buenos Aires, there are almost 100 coworking spaces in Buenos Aires, and programs like IncuBAte, and Academia Buenos Aires Emprende are also building community among Argentina’s entrepreneurs.
2. Inspiration is everywhere.
All four of Argentina’s startup unicorns have their headquarters in Buenos Aires. MercadoLibre, OLX, Despegar, and Globant are massive tech companies that hire hundreds of people in Buenos Aires and across Latin America. With their twenty-year track record, these companies are not only training Argentina’s future tech entrepreneurs, but they also serve as models for what Argentine startups can achieve.
Pioneers like Wences Casares and Hernan Kazah have inspired the most recent generation of entrepreneurs that are creating Argentina’s most innovative startups.
3. Buenos Aires is strategically-located for building a global business.
Buenos Aires may be over 7,000 miles from the United States, but there is only a one to two time difference with the US East Coast depending on the time of year. Argentina’s capital city is only four hours behind London and four hours ahead of Silicon Valley, making it a strategic location for working with a remote team or with international clients.
While Buenos Aires is far from the US, it receives more than ten non-stop flights from the US daily, and it is well-connected to other major Latin American cities such as Santiago, Montevideo, São Paulo, and Bogota.
4. Buenos Aires has some of Latin America’s top tech talent.
Due to its free higher education programs, Argentina’s population is among the most educated in Latin America. Argentina is well-known as a global outsourcing hub for software and app development, and it is currently producing some of the region’s top tech startups, including Satellogic, Uala, and Etermax.
If you are working with teams or customers in the US, Argentina also has the highest level of English in Latin America.
Buenos Aires is a bustling, beautiful city with a network of hungry entrepreneurs who are going after the global market. However, Buenos Aires’ entrepreneurial success has not come without its challenges. Argentina’s unstable economy and complicated regulatory environment constantly pushes its entrepreneurs to be particularly resilient, scrappy, and creative to scale out of the country. Nonetheless, the government of Buenos Aires, along with private actors such as NXTP Labs, Kaszek Ventures, and Startup Buenos Aires, have helped Buenos Aires realize its potential as a global tech hub.
If you are looking to launch a tech startup, Buenos Aires might be the perfect place to start.
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