Posts Tagged ‘#LatinAmericaNews’

Latin America’s crypto conquest is driven by consumers needs

51% of consumers in Latin America have already made a transaction with cryptoassets.

Latin Americans desire flexibility and convenience in digital currencies and payments and are seeking more support from their financial institutions.

MIAMI, June 22, 2022 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — The digital payments revolution that began during the pandemic is consolidating and driving Latin American interest in cryptocurrencies. 51% of consumers in the region have already made a transaction with cryptoassets and more than a third say they have made a payment for an everyday purchase with stablecoin, reveals Mastercard’s New Payments Index 2022, a survey conducted between March and April of this year among more than 35,000 people around the world.

The New Payments Index annually evaluates consumer behavior concerning emerging payment methods. In its second edition, the study shows that financial innovation -cryptocurrencies, DeFI solutions, blockchain, NFTs- registers significant activity in the region, with consumers eager to learn more about this ecosystem.

In Latin America, 54% percent of Latino consumers are optimistic about the performance of digital assets as an investment. Meanwhile, two-thirds of Latinos want greater flexibility to use crypto and traditional payment methods interchangeably in their day-to-day operations.

“More and more Latin Americans are showing interest in cryptocurrencies and want solutions that facilitate access to the crypto world. At Mastercard, we are designing these solutions to expand digital inclusion and strengthening alliances that guarantee operability and support”, said Walter Pimenta, executive vice president, Products and Engineering, Mastercard Latin America and the Caribbean.

The survey shows that consumers in Latin America and the Caribbean would feel more confident investing (69%) and making/receiving payments (67%) in cryptocurrencies if they were issued or backed by a trusted organization. Another 82% acknowledge that they would like to have cryptocurrency-related functions available directly from their current financial institution.

Digital payments, convenience and flexibility
Mastercard’s New Payments Index 2022 reveals that 86% of Latino consumers have used at least one emerging payment method in the past year. While 77% of Americans and 74% of Europeans prefer traditional payment methods to newer ones, Latinos are willing to use emerging methods such as biometrics, digital currencies and QR code, in addition to contactless payments.

“The future of payments is already here. Increasingly Latin Americans are turning to technology to conduct their financial transactions and this trend is expected to continue to rise, with an overwhelming 95% planning to use a digital payment method in the coming year and 29% acknowledging having used less cash in the past year”, added Pimenta.

Consumers in the region are familiar with fintechs and open banking, which allows them to conveniently manage their personal finances. Nearly 50% of Latin American consumers already use digital channels for financial activities and 78% of them are interested in flexible payment solutions that allow them, for example, to change the payment date of their bills, especially those with irregular incomes and millennials.

Biometric payments: security and convenience
When deciding which payment method to use, Latinos prioritize security (54%), but also look for the speed that financial technology offers. Biometrics is emerging as an option to find that balance between convenience and security. Three out of four Latinos say that “using biometric technologies for identity and payments is more secure than a PIN, password or another form of identification,” but concerns persist about which entities have access to their data.

People under 40 and millennials are more likely to perceive emerging digital solutions as secure. While they still use them, people who grew up in traditional banking are more wary, which is – for all players in the payments chain – an opportunity to build trust.

To learn more about this year’s New Payments Index, click here to Mastercard’s Newsroom.

About Mastercard (NYSE: MA)
Mastercard is a global technology company in the payments industry. Our mission is to connect and power an inclusive, digital economy that benefits everyone, everywhere by making transactions safe, simple, smart and accessible. Using secure data and networks, partnerships and passion, our innovations and solutions help individuals, financial institutions, governments and businesses realize their greatest potential. Our decency quotient, or DQ, drives our culture and everything we do inside and outside of our company. With connections across more than 210 countries and territories, we are building a sustainable world that unlocks priceless possibilities for all.
www.mastercard.com

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HIGHGATE TO OPERATE AWARD-WINNING PORTFOLIO OF HOTELS IN PERU

Transaction Solidifies Highgate as a Leading Hotel Manager in the Caribbean and Latin American (CALA) Region Across Branded and Independent Hotels

NEW YORK, March 15, 2022 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ – Highgate, a leading hotel management, investment, technology, and development company, announced today the Company’s launch into South America by taking over management of a portfolio of six hotels in Peru, owned by Urbanova – one of Peru’s most notable real estate groups. The deal expands Highgate’s portfolio in the Caribbean and Latin America (CALA) to a total of 26 hotels and resorts, making it one of the largest hospitality management companies in this sought-after region.

Highgate brings to the CALA market a best-in-class management approach, using innovative technology and hands-on in-market resources with a unique perspective that marries local culture with global experience, insight and scale.

The Peru portfolio is comprised of Marriott branded properties in irreplicable locations ranked best-in-class within their respective brands. They include Palacio del Inka Hotel, a Luxury Collection Hotel in Cusco, Tambo del Inka, A Luxury Collection Resort in Urubamba, Hotel Paracas, A Luxury Collection Resort, Aloft Lima Miraflores, AC Hotel Lima Miraflores and the Westin Lima Hotel & Convention Center.

These properties join Highgate’s current CALA portfolio, which includes a diverse collection of hotels and resorts including: The Ocean Club, a Luxury Collection Resort in Costa Norte, Dominican Republic, AC San Juan, Aloft Tulum in Mexico, Acoya Curaçao Resort, the BRIX hotel, an Autograph Collection hotel in Port of Spain, Trinidad and the ROK hotel, a Tapestry Collection hotel in Kingston, Jamaica. Earlier this year, Highgate also announced that it had acquired and assumed management of the Embassy Suites by Hilton San Juan Hotel & Casino.

To oversee the CALA portfolio, which spans 13+ countries including Aruba, Belize, Curacao, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Mexico, Peru, Puerto Rico, St. Lucia, Trinidad and Turks and Caicos, Highgate appointed Marco A. Selva, who recently joined as Senior Vice President of Luxury and Lifestyle Operations.

“We are honored to be awarded the management of Urbanova’s prestigious portfolio,” said Arash Azarbarzin, CEO of Highgate. “There is an enormous opportunity for growth throughout Peru and we look forward to tailoring our hospitality style, activations and best-in-class revenue management to the needs of each region. With Marco at the helm of such an outstanding team and hotel collection, we will establish a new standard for hospitality management in the country. Travelers across the world are increasingly drawn to the beauty and cultural vibrancy of the Caribbean and Latin America, and Highgate will be at the center of the development of these world-class destinations.”

“Our search for a management firm drew a fiercely competitive field of prospective partners, but we knew that Highgate offered an owner-centric perspective and standard of excellence that is unparalleled,” said Hugo Desenzani, CEO of Urbanova. “Our unique assets and fantastic talent – under the management and leadership of Highgate – will deliver incredible results and raise the hospitality bar in the region.”

About Highgate

Highgate is a leading real estate investment and hospitality management company widely recognized as an innovator in the industry. Highgate is the dominant player in major U.S. gateway cities including New York, Boston, Miami, San Francisco and Honolulu, with a growing footprint in Europe, the Caribbean and Latin America. The hospitality forward company provides expert guidance through all stages of the property cycle, from planning and development through recapitalization or disposition. Highgate has a proven record of developing its diverse portfolio of bespoke lifestyle hotel brands, legacy brands, and independent hotels and resorts with contemporary programming and digital acumen. The company utilizes industry-leading revenue management tools that efficiently identify and predict evolving market dynamics to drive outperformance and maximize asset value. With an executive team consisting of some of the most experienced hotel management leaders, the company is a trusted partner for top ownership groups and major hotel brands. Highgate maintains corporate offices in New York, Dallas, London, Miami, Seattle and Waikiki. www.highgate.com.

About Urbanova

Urbanova is a Peruvian Real Estate group with approximately $2bn of Assets Under Management. Its irreplicable portfolio in premium locations combine over 170,000 Sq ft of prime office buildings, 5 shopping malls, the country’s best hotel portfolio, and a vast landbank to be developed. Leveraging on its ability to develop and operate multiple asset classes, as well as an unparalleled local market knowledge, Urbanova has developed two clusters where Peruvians go to live, work and play. Its affiliate Intursa owns 9 hotels throughout Peru, including iconic city hotels such as the Westin Lima and JW Lima, luxury resorts in remote locations, historic hotels in Cuzco and a lifestyle select-service hotels in vibrant city boroughs. Urbanova Inmobiliaria

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ASOFARMA CENTRAL AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN, THROUGH ITS HEADQUARTERS ADIUM, REACHES AN IMPORTANT AGREEMENT WITH MODERNA INC. TO COLLABORATE IN THE DISTRIBUTION AND MARKETING OF VACCINES AGAINST COVID 19 IN THE REGION

Leading company in pharmaceutical innovation, based in our country, signs unprecedented agreement for the arrival of vaccines against COVID-19

PANAMA CITY, Feb. 23, 2022 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — ASOFARMA Central America and the Caribbean, through its parent company ADIUM, and Moderna Inc. reached a collaboration agreement for the distribution and commercialization in the region of SPIKEVAX, the vaccine developed by Moderna against SARS -CoV-2.

ASOFARMA Central America and the Caribbean is a leading pharmaceutical company in the region, which develops, produces and markets innovative products in therapeutic areas such as oncology, cardiology, central nervous system, diabetes and urology, among others.

As part of the agreement reached, ASOFARMA will collaborate with Moderna in the management of supply contracts already in force, as well as in vaccine registration processes, support for pharmacovigilance activities, continuing medical education, government affairs, marketing, and generation of new agreements that facilitate the availability of SPIKEVAX in the region.

“We are delighted to partner with Moderna to help patients, physicians and governments in this effort against COVID-19. Moderna is a leading company in the fight against the pandemic, and we are proud to have been chosen as partners for this task, providing all our experience and regional presence,” said Bernardo Girala, General Manager of ASOFARMA Central America and the Caribbean.

“This alliance confirms our purpose of providing the population with innovative treatments that help improve their quality of life and expand vaccination rates in the region,” Girala said.

Moderna Inc., a pioneer biotechnology company in the development of messenger RNA (mRNA) therapies and vaccines, has relied on ASOFARMA to make possible the arrival in the region of its vaccine against COVID 19, Spikevax.

Moderna’s mRNA platform is based on continuous advances in basic and applied mRNA science, delivery and manufacturing technology; which has allowed the development of therapies and vaccines for infectious diseases, immuno-oncology, rare diseases, cardiovascular diseases and autoimmune diseases.

With this new agreement reached by ASOFARMA, Moderna Inc. joins a list of international pharmaceutical and biotechnological research and development companies that ASOFARMA has represented in the region for more than twenty years.

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Enterprise Opens at Colombia’s Medellin International Airport

ST. LOUIS, Dec. 2, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ – Enterprise Holdings announced today that it has opened at Colombia’s Medellin International Airport. The new branch – which is already taking reservations – serves customers of the company’s flagship Enterprise Rent-A-Car brand, as well as National Car Rental and Alamo Rent A Car. Enterprise Holdings owns all three brands.

The new Colombia branch, located in the country’s second largest airport, represents the company’s commitment to serving domestic and international customers as travel opens up around the world. Since the onset of the pandemic, the company has opened more than 100 new branches worldwide.

“Colombia is a premier market for Enterprise’s global growth as we continue to expand to meet the needs of business and leisure travelers alike, wherever they choose to go,” said Peter A. Smith, vice president of global franchising at Enterprise Holdings. “As international travel begins again, we are excited to serve our customers around the world and stand by our promise to provide them with a safe and convenient rental experience.”

The Medellin branch increases Enterprise’s presence in Colombia to 11 locations. It’s the latest in the company’s ongoing international expansion in Latin America and surrounding areas. Enterprise Rent-A-Car made its debut in Latin America in 2015, joining the National and Alamo brands.

Customers in Colombia also have the added benefit of earning awards and free rental days through two loyalty programs: Enterprise Plus through the Enterprise Rent-A-Car brand, and the award-winning Emerald Club through the National Car Rental brand. Enterprise Plus and Emerald Club both launched in Colombia in 2017.

About Enterprise Holdings
Enterprise Holdings, Inc. is a leading provider of mobility solutions, owning and operating the Enterprise Rent-A-CarNational Car Rental and Alamo Rent A Car brands through its integrated global network of independent regional subsidiaries and franchise partners. Enterprise Holdings and its affiliates offer extensive car rental, carsharing, truck rental, fleet management, retail car sales, as well as travel management and other transportation services, to make travel easier and more convenient for customers. Privately held by the Taylor family of St. Louis, Mo., Enterprise Holdings manages a diverse fleet of more than 1.85 million vehicles through a network of nearly 10,000 fully staffed neighborhood and airport rental locations in more than 90 countries and territories.

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Stone Pagamentos Co-Founder, Eduardo Pontes, acquires a minority stake in Tutuka

Pontes and Tutuka looking to grow payments in Latin America and beyond

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates, Oct. 23, 2019 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ – Tutuka announced today that the Co-Founder of one of Latin America’s biggest fintechs, Stone Pagamentos, has acquired a minority stake in Tutuka.

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Tutuka is well known for its unique processor plus model which enables fintechs, mobile wallets, apps and banks across emerging markets to easily issue Mastercard and Visa payment products such as physical or virtual cards that are linked to the values in their customers’ wallets or accounts.

Pontes co-founded Stone Pagamentos in Brazil, which rapidly become one of the country’s largest acquirers and IPO’d on NASDAQ in 2018 with a valuation of US$8.8b.

The Latin American fintech market is growing at a rapid rate, with research conducted in 2018 by the Inter-American Development Bank and Finnovista showing a 66% growth of fintech startups from 2017 to 2018. With Tutuka’s deep experience in emerging markets and the ability to make payments happen quickly, easily and securely, the company is well-equipped to maximize the opportunities for growth in the region.

Tutuka has clients in over 19 countries across Africa, Asia, the Middle East and now Latin America.

Pontes’ experience, coupled with Tutuka’s capabilities as a payments enabler, will support Tutuka’s expansion into Latin America and help to drive financial inclusion in the region.

About Tutuka

Tutuka (www.tutuka.com) is a third-party payments enabler that makes payments happen by enabling our clients’ customers to pay with Mastercard and Visa cards and products. Tutuka enables fintechs, mobile wallets, apps and banks across Africa, Asia, the Middle East and Latin America to issue virtual and physical cards and other Mastercard and Visa payment products. Tutuka’s processor plus model allows our clients to easily, cost-effectively and quickly link into card schemes without the complexity and slow timelines normally associated with processors.

About Eduardo Pontes

Eduardo Pontes (https://investors.stone.co/advisory-board/eduardo-pontes) co-founded Stone Pagamentos (https://www.stone.com.br) which IPO’d on NASDAQ in 2018. Eduardo Pontes is now principal of Arpex Capital.

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One in five people in Latin America and the Caribbean experiences sexual extortion, or knows someone who has, survey says

Report highlights citizens’ views and experiences of bribery and corruption

BERLIN, Sept. 23, 2019 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ – A new report from Transparency International reveals that more than half of all citizens in 18 Latin American and Caribbean countries think corruption is getting worse in their country and governments aren’t doing enough to tackle it. Corruption is a major concern for ordinary people; 85 per cent of those surveyed believe government corruption is “a big problem”.

Read the report

The report, entitled, Global Corruption Barometer (GCB) — Latin America and the Caribbean, for the first time shows one in five people experiences sexual extortion when accessing a government service, like health care or education, or knows someone who has.

Data also shows that 71 per cent of people think that sextortion happens at least occasionally.

Equally troubling, one in four people was offered a bribe in exchange for votes at national, regional or local elections in the past five years. In a damning indictment of low trust in government, 65 per cent think their government is run by and for a few private interests.

These alarming statistics underscore the disproportionate effect that corruption has on women, and suggests a significant lack of political integrity among government leaders. The office of the President and Prime Minister, as well as Members of Parliament, are seen as the most corrupt group or institution by 53 and 52 per cent of people respectively.

“Too often, presidents, parliamentarians and other political leaders act in their own self-interest, at the expense of the citizens they serve,” said Delia Ferreira Rubio, Chair of Transparency International. “In a region where anti-corruption efforts are building momentum despite recent setbacks, citizens continue to demand more and better from their governments.”

People’s actual experience with bribery is similarly concerning. More than one in five people who access public services, have to pay a bribe. This is equivalent to approximately 56 million citizens.

Across the region, police earn the highest bribery rate (24 per cent), while other services like utilities, including electricity and water, are close behind (19 per cent). 

Despite these challenges, an overwhelming majority of people remain hopeful. Seventy-seven per cent believe ordinary citizens can make a difference in the fight against corruption.

“Citizens have the right to report corruption and expect that politicians act with integrity,” said Patricia Moreira, Managing Director of Transparency International. “Corruption eats away at society and undermines institutions. Political leaders need to listen to the clear demands of citizens to tackle corruption and strengthen democracy.”

Transparency International recommends political leaders take the following actions:

  • Recognise and address specific gendered forms of corruption, including with gender-sensitive reporting mechanisms.
  • Strengthen integrity of elections and enforce sanctions against vote-buying, with transparent campaign finance and support for fact-based journalism.
  • Empower individuals, civil society and media to report corruption, including with comprehensive legislation to protect whistleblowers.
  • Implement the Lima Commitment, including publicly reporting on progress since the VIII Summit of the Americas.

For more information, including a full list of recommendations, go to: anticorru.pt/gcb2019lac

Report
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About Transparency International
Through chapters in more than 100 countries and an international secretariat in Berlin, Transparency International has been leading the fight against corruption for the last 25 years.

About the Global Corruption Barometer
The GCB is the largest, most detailed survey of citizens’ views on corruption and their experiences of bribery in Latin American and the Caribbean. Between January and March 2019, the GCB surveyed more than 17,000 citizens in 18 countries across the region. The surveys were conducted by Ipsos in 13 Latin American countries, Market Research Insights in 4 Caribbean countries and by Public Domain Limited in the Bahamas. For more details on the methodology, a full list of countries surveyed and information on the survey approach, please see here.

Transparency International has been working to fight corruption for the past 25 years.

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