A disconnect in the industry
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30th July 2014

Despite growth opportunities, top tech and telecom companies are losing financial ground in the region.
By Santiago Gutiérrez
In an environment of apparently increased possibilities, the top 40 Tech Companies in Latin America – the great majority of them in telecoms -do not have the best results to show. Together, they posted a combined revenue of $260.7 billion in 2013, 2.3% less than in 2012. The fall was widely felt across the industry as 25 of the 40 companies (or eight out of the top 10) had negative growth rates. The sector champion,AméricaMóvil México, managed to grow 0.5%, while compatriot Telcel, fourth on the table, had a good 3.2% revenue increase. Top Brazilian Telefónica, on the other hand, reported a very significant 10.7% drop in revenues, while Oi posted a 1.5% fall. Telefónica Brazil’s plunge took a toll on the Latin American operation of Telefónica, which closed 2013 with a 0.1% loss of revenue.
This decline in sales is not new to the industry. In 2010, for instance, the top 40 Tech companies had revenues of $268 billion, 2.7% more than last year’s figures.
The paradox lies in the fact that telecommunications are all too important in Latin America. Panama, for instance, ranks second in the world as the country with the most number of mobile telephone subscriptions per capita. According to World Economic Forum figures, Panamanians have 2.04 subscriptions per person, which closely trails the 2.1 subscriptions per capita of tech-savvy Hong Kong.
Eight …

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