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According to UNESCO, the cultural sector in Colombia contributes to the GDP with 3.41% of the total. The population that has an occupation related to this sector is 2.1%. Comparing it with the GDP contribution of other industries such as transportation (3.21%) and construction (3.20%), cultures has become extremely important.

Culture’s role in development has been recognized by the government and integrated into National Development Plans. Colombian authorities have taken efforts to generate an all-inclusive policy to promote the culture sector as a fundamental part of development.

Nowadays there is significant demand of foreign and domestic cultural goods, services, and activities.

The cultural activities to which we refer range from visits to cultural venues, concerts, theatres, music festivals, television, cinema, radio, advertising, musical and artistic activities, art, design, museums, libraries, architecture, and historical and archaeological monuments. All this has made Colombia reach a highly evolved cultural environment, while maintaining an increase in the demand for culture.

Culture is so important for the economy that the Colombian government has developed and promoted a crucial Cultural Tourism.

Colombia arouses great interest to foreign travelers: it has 9 destinations named Material Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO, has significant gastronomic tourism, is known for being the country of a thousand rhythms for its wide musical diversity, and has 17 towns proclaimed as Colombian Heritage that highlight the architecture, customs, and history of the regions. All this represents an important opportunity for the cultural and cultural tourism sectors.

Fuentes:
PROCOLOMBIA. (22 de Enero de 2021). Obtenido de PROCOLOMBIA.COM: https://procolombia.co/actualidad/turismo-cultural-una-oferta-atractiva-y-responsable
UNESCO. (2014). UNESCO. Obtenido de https://es.unesco.org/creativity/sites/creativity/files/cdis/cdis_analytical_brief_-_colombia_0_1.pdf



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Colombia es reconocida por ser uno de los países con mayor diversidad cultural y étnica, convirtiéndola en una nación con una gran identidad en el mundo.

Debido a su ubicación geográfica, el territorio colombiano siempre tuvo una amplia población indígena, a sus costas llegaron innumerables expediciones españolas, así como grandes migraciones afrodescendientes. Todo esto influyo a la aparición de numerosos grupos étnicos que hasta 2013 representaban el 13 % del total de la población.

Esta situación permeó además en aspectos como la religión (aproximadamente 90% de la población es cristiana), la comida (se dice que el único país de Latinoamérica donde el arroz es más importante que el maíz), las costumbres y la pluralidad de lenguas, ya que conjuntamente del castellano se tienen registradas 60 lenguas étnicas. El país es tan diverso que una región o ciudad puede ser distinguida solo por su forma de vestir, su comida o su forma de hablar.

Además, a lo largo de sus más de 200 años de historia, Colombia ha tenido muchos cambios territoriales y políticos, cambiando su nombre oficial en repetidas ocasiones:

  • La gran Colombia que unía Venezuela, Colombia, Panamá y Ecuador (1819-1831)
  • Nueva granada (1832 -1861)
  • Confederación Granadina (1862- 1863)
  • Estados Unidos de Colombia (1863-1886).
  • Republica de Colombia (1886-Actualidad)

Es importante mencionar el gran orgullo que la sociedad colombiana siente y expresa por su cultura, abarcando y reconociendo su historia, artistas, pinturas, literatura, cine, gastronomía, joyería, esculturas, su biodiversidad, así como una gran pasión por el futbol.

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Mexican Retail Industry: An opportunity for emerging business models

 

Mexico has the leading retail industry in all Latin America, the second biggest in the American continent, only behind the United States. With $7.13 trillion MXN in sales from 2016-2019 (Sabanoglu, 2022), Mexico has stood out as a key emerging market for the industry. For the last decade, this sector has had the potential to exceed Mexico’s average future growth: with a compound annual growth rate of 5.48% (Technavio, 2022), it is currently achieving it. Mexico holds very attractive opportunities for growth and exploration of new consumer trends and business models in an emerging market.

Business concepts for a complex demographic

Mexican culture and its complex and diverse socio-demographic and economic dynamics have given birth to a dual system of consumer trends. Modern retail stores and multinational franchises (such as Starbucks, Inditex, Adidas, etcetera) are constantly growing and attracting new audiences through innovative lifestyle marketing strategies that appeal to an upper-middle and upper class demographic in Mexico. Alongside these multinationals, traditional retail concepts such as markets, ‘abarrotes’ and supply centers persist, having been a core of Mexican consumer culture for decades and remaining a tradition, especially in Mexican lower-middle classes.

There is a third concept that has managed to adapt to Mexico’s complex environment and attract broad audiences from all different socio-economic demographics: Brands like such as OXXO, Farmacias Similares, Walmart, etcetera, are some examples and have become a staple in Mexican retail. Understanding the Mexican approach to shopping and consumer trends is essential for a successful business strategy in the industry.

Changes in behavior after the pandemic

The pandemic has affected industries worldwide, retail being no exception, and it has changed consumer behavior and trends, which represent attractive opportunities for companies in the sector. Mexicans are more willing to invest in themselves, as health, beauty and selfcare products have seen a boom in sales.

A recess in the pandemic has brought optimism in Mexican consumers: retail sales in Mexico increased 6.4% in February 2022 over the same period in the previous year, compared with market expectations of 5.7% (INEGI, 2022), despite inflation and an economy that has not fully recovered. Along with an upturn in sales, consumer confidence in Mexico rose to 44.3% in April of 2022, with improvements seen in the current assessment of Mexico’s economy (Trading Economics, 2022).

Mexicans are a very social-oriented population, and their shopping behavior translates to that as well. Mexicans like to spend their leisure time in shopping centers and malls, regardless of their social status. It is a social and consumer experience. The expansion of the middle class contributed to an increasing number of shopping centers. However, the pandemic modified this behavior, adding a new option for the Mexican buyers.

Use of new technologies

A need for social distancing during the pandemic gave e-commerce and the supermarket channel a big impulse, registering robust growth in sales revenues (EMIS, 2022). New technologies have introduced digital channels and online shopping experiences, becoming a permanent option in how Mexican consumers shop in this new post-pandemic reality.

This change represents an opportunity for bigger investments in digital platforms, direct-to-consumer operations and last-mile delivery services. Social media platforms have become increasingly important as they facilitate interactions between businesses and possible clients and is an easy tool to use to get one’s business across multiple audiences. They also represent opportunities for innovation in media engagement, digital consumer data, and optimization of digital marketing to expand reach for companies.

The surge in online platforms and last-mile delivery services as a new business model require investment and development of infrastructure for these services. Improvement in delivery strategies and tech solutions for platforms and payment methods are in high demand in Mexico as the country adapts to its new consumer behavior. It is expected that as infrastructure and services evolve, more and more of the Mexican population will adapt to these new technologies.

Mexico continues to be a key market in the retail sector. Its broad socio-economic environment provides opportunities for a wide variety of business models and innovative technologies to cater to new consumer experiences and to develop new business models in this post-pandemic area, while providing a secure environment within an industry that continues to grow despite current economic challenges.

Sources