It’s No Wonder Google Picked Brazil As The First Latin American Office

In 1983, Brazil was still under military rule, but the government created an organization called the Associação Brasileira de Private Equity & Venture Capital (ABVCAP) to promote entrepreneurship. ABVCAP is still active, but developing a significant venture capital presence in the private sector didn’t take hold until 2000. That was the year Ecovec, Tropos Lab, Inventta consultancy, and Inseed Investments got together and formed the Instituto Inovação Group. That group was the foremost business generator in Brazil for a couple of years. In 2002, Google saw the potential in the Brazilian market, and the company wanted to get involved. Google needed a Latin American office, and São Paulo was perfect. The decision to open that office was a good one. A steady stream of talent continues to knock on Google’s door every day.



The news that Google was entering the Brazilian market wasn’t news to Flavio Maluf. Maluf heads the giant Brazilian building material manufacturer, Eucatex. Eucatex is an established São Paulo business. Eucatex started as a one-product company in 1951. Flavio’s grandfather is the founder, and thanks to some of his smart business decision, Eucatex is now one of Brazil’s leading exporters of building materials. The first product, a eucalyptus wood ceiling tile, was the inspiration for the company’s name. Today, Flavio Maluf oversees the production and the sales of an extensive building material product line. Eucatex paint, varnishes, ceiling tiles and floorboards, as well as other products, are sold internationally.



Flavio Maluf is also an investor who knows the business potential in Brazil. Even though Maluf has a track record in the United States, he thinks Brazil has the potential to surpass the U.S. in online use. Brazilians are obsessed with the Internet, and Flavio knows the obsession will only get stronger as new Brazilian businesses enter the online marketplace. Flavio attended New York University before he became president of the company, so he is familiar with the online business climate in the U.S. Even though the United States is considered a mecca for online sales, the Brazilian market will exceed the U.S. in terms of social activity and at some point sales. Google knew that fifteen years ago, and Flavio Maluf knew it too.



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