U.S. companies will have chance to cash in on World Cup and the Olympics in Brazil


The next few years are going to be awfully busy in Brazil, and U.S. companies will be looking to get in on the action.

Brazil flag

The next few years are going to be awfully busy in Brazil, and U.S. companies will be looking to get in on the action.

The South American country is preparing to host two of the world’s biggest sporting events: the FIFA World Cup in 2014 and the Summer Olympic Games in 2016.

Those events are expected to provide a big boost for Brazil’s tourism industry and generate billions of dollars in economic impact — and, in preparation, the country plans to spend more than $50 billion on event-related projects.

Brazil already has many of the sports venues it needs from when it hosted the Pan American Games in 2007. Therefore, it will focus a larger percentage of its major investments on transportation, telecommunications and other public infrastructure projects, instead of stadiums and arenas.

Opportunities

The World Cup will provide a major opportunity for business, but interested companies should move quickly to get involved. The event’s June 12, 2014, start date is fast-approaching.

At this point, the best opportunities likely will be in the areas of tourism and hospitality, as the Brazilian Tourism Board is projecting more than $10 billion in tourism-related spending – more than 20 times as much as South Africa reported during the 2010 World Cup. It expects the event to draw approximately 600,000 tourists, generating spending of $2.6 billion. And it anticipates 3 million Brazilians to attend games in the 12 host cities, spending another $7.9 billion.

Meanwhile, planning is already underway for the 2016 Summer Olympics. And there’s plenty of time for U.S. companies to get involved.

The Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Organising Committee plans to issue numerous requests for proposal during 2014. Those RFPs will seek bids for various telecommunications equipment and services, design and graphics, professional services, construction services, sports equipment and supplies, commercial vehicles, cleaning services, textiles, furniture and consumer-electronics products.

The committee says it is seeking “companies that are reliable, transparent and committed to ethical principals” and who are “trained under the best administrative, financial, technical and commercial conditions.”

How to get involved

Brazil is a competitive market, so U.S. firms that already do business there or have a partner in the country will have a leg up on the competition. But there will be opportunities for other companies, large and small, to get involved, too.

"It is our understanding that there will not be as strong of an emphasis on local content requirements since the services will be considered a one-time purchase"

“Unlike other procurement opportunities in Brazil, it is our understanding that there will not be as strong of an emphasis on local content requirements since the services will be considered a one-time purchase,” Patrick Daly, a business development specialist for the U.S. Commercial Service’s office in Brazil, wrote in a report on the potential business impact for U.S. companies. “Therefore, U.S. firms that are not invested in Brazil may still have a strong incentive to bid on these projects, especially firms that have had experience supplying goods and services to previous Olympics or major sports events and can address Brazil’s sustainable development goals within their bids.”

Roughly 75 percent of contracts for goods and services for the Olympics will be awarded in 2014 and 2015, so this is a great time to get involved. However, it’s important to note that prospective bidders must preregister with the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Organising Committee’s Supplier Development Program.

The committee’s website also provides more information regarding the status and timing of bids within the Suppliers Portal on its website.

The U.S. Commercial Service’s office in Rio de Janiero also would be a valuable resource for businesses that are interested in doing business in Brazil during the World Cup or Olympics. The agency, which is the trade-promotion arm of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration, helps U.S. companies get started in exporting or expand into new markets.


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