10:33 AM

There's a Lot of IT in Brazil: Brasscom And The South American IT Industry

I'm spending this week in Brazil at a conference organized by the world's largest IT analyst firm Gartner, and sponsored by Brasscom, (Brazilian Association of Information Technology and Communication Companies)

South American IT companies have started cropping up on my radar screen over the past year so I'm keen to find out more about this sector.

This week I will be reporting on what is happening in Brazil, and also in Argentina, and Chile.

I spoke with Richard Matlus, senior VP of Outsourcing at Gartner. He said Brazil and other Latin American countries are becoming important in key sectors such as providing infrastructure outsourcing support services.

He speaks to lot of users of these services. He says that US companies like working with Latin American companies because:

- The quality is very good. He doesn't recommend India for prime time zone outsourced infrastructure support services.

- It helps a lot that the time zones in South America are so close to the US, this means that the prime times are covered in the same time zones. If most of your customers are in a certain time zone, you can have your best quality people working in the same shift, which is very important for customer satisfaction.

Mr Matlus says that this is one of the largest cited advantages among clients. His clients tend to use teams in India for the other two less important daily shifts.

- South Americans speak good English but, more importantly, they also have a better at understanding the culture of the US -- that makes a very big difference in terms of management and the quality of support.

I also spoke with Ricardo Asse, a senior advisor for Brasscom, (Brazilian Association of Information Technology and Communication Companies).

Here are some notes from our discussion:

- Brasscom has been around for 6 years but it is now hitting its stride in the last couple of years, with lots of members and it is better focused on helping to promote Brazil's IT industry.

- Sao Paulo (where the Brasscom/Gartner conference is located) is the South American HQ for nearly every major US corporation, IBM has been here more than 60 years. There is a long tradition of working with US companies.

- Brazil, Argentina, and Chile are discussing cooperating in an umbrella organization to co-promote each other's IT sectors.

Mr Asse says that each country has strengths in technology and IT. There is much to be gained from aligning those IT resources into a united organization that can work with multinational companies across a broad spectrum of services.

I'll have more South American based posts all this week...