25 Oct 2017 | News



Press Release Immediate Release  UK & Ireland Leading economic development consultancy, OCO Global, today announces it has opened a new office in Bogota, Colombia as it seeks to increase support to businesses and organisations exploring new markets in Latin America. The company, headquartered in Belfast and with an established network of offices worldwide, plans to identify and unlock new opportunities in the region which is set to experience substantial growth in the next few years. OCO Global is launching its Global Market Accelerator Programme (MAP), currently already operating in France, Germany and the United States, to provide market-entry and trade development support to its clients interested in expanding in Latin America.

The company will also provide in-market consulting and training services aimed at Latin American EDOs interested in implementing the best trade and FDI practices. Commenting on the expansion, OCO Global’s founder and CEO Mark O’Connell said: “Latin America is an exciting emerging market that should not be neglected by economic development organisations looking for new trade opportunities or businesses looking to expand in new markets. Our specialist team on the ground will help our clients make the right connections and navigate these markets successfully.” OCO Global in Colombia joins more than 1,100 foreign companies that have arrived in the country during the last five years. All these companies have been able to take advantage of a thriving export hub of goods and professional services as well as a resilient economy that continues growing, particularly now, when Colombia is experiencing a post-conflict period, said Felipe Jaramillo, president of ProColombia, an organisation that has been working and supporting OCO Global in Colombia.

New opportunities in Latin America OCO Global’s arrival in Latin America is timely with the outlook for business in the region positive. The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) forecasts positive economic growth rates for the major economies in the region, such as Colombia (2.1%), Perú (2.5%), Mexico (2%) and Argentina (2%). Sergio Barraza, Director of OCO Global Latin America, said: “The picking up of global trade volumes, recovery of commodity prices and boost in domestic demand will have a positive impact in the economic growth in Latin America in coming years. This will create further trade and investment opportunities for both SMEs and mid-cap companies. “With the recent wave of protectionism in Europe and North America, we expect that Latin American countries will try to diversify their trade relationships and even try to boost intra-regional trade, as it is currently the world region that trades the least with itself.” In recent years, Latin American countries have experienced a boom of its middle class and a significant growth of its disposable income, creating opportunities within sectors such as food and beverages, automotive and consumer goods.

The region offers a strong market for technology products, machinery and equipment, particularly around the commodities that compose the export basket of most countries in the region. OCO Global is also positive about the business outlook for Colombia in particular in the near future, Mark says. “The decision to base ourselves in Colombia is strategic as we believe the recently concluded peace process will create huge business opportunities related to infrastructure development, rural development and extractive industries in areas previously affected by the conflict.” OCO Global Latin America also intends to provide in-market consulting and training services aimed at Latin American investment promotion agencies (IPAs) interested in understanding and implementing FDI best practice. The company already has significant experience of operating in Latin America, having delivered consulting, lead generation and training assignments with CORFO-Invest Chile, Uruguay XXI, Investe Sao Paulo, INDI Minas Gerais, ProBarranquilla, ProNicaragua, CINDE Costa Rica and CAIPA, among others. For further information on how OCO Global Latin America can help you with opportunities in the region, contact Sergio Barraza at  +57 (0) 318 767 6814 (mobile) or +57 (1) 795 76 30 (phone) or email at sergio.barraza@wordpress-448088-2081753.cloudwaysapps.com.

For media enquiries Therese McCrory, +44 28 90 241849 (therese.mccrory@wordpress-448088-2081753.cloudwaysapps.com)


Notes to editors: About OCO Global OCO Global is the leading advisory firm in Europe for Trade and Investment Services and works with businesses to guide their expansion internationally through export and FDI. OCO Global offers a one stop, full service solution for companies working with a range of trusted business partners to make it fast and easy to set up new operations and expand quickly. The company is the exclusive provider for UK’s Department of International Trade market-entry and trade support in the United States and Canada and the company expects to open the Latin American corridor with this expansion.

The company also works with many US companies supporting their expansion into Europe and Asia. OCO Global is a leading specialist provider of Trade and Investment services including Market Entry Support, business intelligence for Trade and Investment, trade mission support, business development, advisory, trends analysis and software solutions. Headquartered in Northern Ireland, OCO Global has offices in leading markets globally including UK, Germany, France, Japan, Dubai and the US. OCO Global’s clients include leading national, state and regional economic development organizations as well as private companies seeking to enter new markets or grow their domestic base. wordpress-448088-2081753.cloudwaysapps.com

About OCO Global Latin America Sergio Barraza is Director of OCO Global Latin America, leading its consulting, trade and investment operations and managing the company’s growing network of partnerships in the region. Since 2014, he has held senior positions in the Colombian government, working most recently as Director of Productive Inclusion at the Department of Social Development, during which time he oversaw the implementation of a budget of more than $200 million on social programmes and projects across many regions.

Before joining OCO Global in Europe, Sergio worked extensively in economic development and investment promotion as Investment Promotion Coordinator of ProBarranquilla in Colombia, leading his region’s economic development strategy across many sectors, particularly on ICT and BPO, attracting and facilitating the establishment of more than 70 companies and more than 200 USD million on investment deals. He worked from 2011 to 2014 at OCO Global’s office in London where he managed training, consulting and investment lead generation projects with government clients such as CORFO/Invest Chile, Uruguay XXI, Missouri Economic Development Department, Enterprise Florida, Invest Pacific (Colombia), ProBarranquilla (Colombia), UKTI, Cincinnati USA Partnership, INDI Minas Gerais (Brazil), etc. In 2013/2014, he supported the British Columbia Trade & Investment office in London, particularly facilitating trade and investment promotion in the UK and Spain.