The COVID-19 in Latin America has particular characteristics common among the countries of the region. Among them we can identify:
- The beginning of the pandemic was late compared to that of European and North American countries.
- The governments of the two largest countries (Brazil and Mexico) reacted more slowly to Covid’s impact on the population and the economy.
Similarly, measures aimed at minimizing the possibilities of contagion taken in all countries of the world, including the countries in Latam, have changed the behavior of the workforce and the way of life of the population. As a result, consumption patterns and everyday life have been reformulated for all to a greater or lesser extent. This is despite the fact that the economies of Latin America make it very difficult for the population to work from home because of the complexities of infrastructure, types of work, and poor conditions in the face of the challenge of working in a virtual way.
However, these same changes have opened opportunities for those companies with products that flourished under these conditions or that have managed to adapt to the new consumption patterns of the population, some even doubling the bet for the business. An example of these bets are the companies that launched, promoted, or modified products to respond to a lifestyle in which they spend more time at home, work from home, and therefore it is required to have more space, more amenities, more equipment, more technology, better connectivity or more entertainment for all members of the family. Companies such as ‘Rappi’, a Colombian multinational with a presence in 10 countries on our continent, and ‘Only Network’, a Brazilian company specializing in technical support and software, for example, are some of those that knew how to read the moment and promote its growth.
In the first half of 2020 alone, food delivery services in Latin America grew by 66%, according to Euromonitor International numbers. Rappi, in addition to being founded just over five years ago, went from being a food delivery app to having cash delivery services, events, betting, cravings, among others.
This panorama, in the midst of a context that makes Rappi’s services more valuable and relevant in daily life, seems to have arrived to stay. Its response to the pandemic has made Rappi one of the big winners of 2020.
Just before the start of the pandemic, the extraordinary trip of the Uruguayan company reached an important milestone when it processed up to 1 billion dollars in 2019. Its value during 2020 reached 2,000 million dollars thanks to its rapid expansion in multiple countries of the region, in the midst of the conjuncture generated by the COVID-19.
A key part of its bet to growth was to expand the business by having its own premises, following the theory that it is more important to travel less distance than the speed of the delivery.
This paper and plastic packaging company with origin in Bogotá and presence in Argentina, Mexico, Uruguay, Venezuela, and the United States, is an example of adaptation and betting in the context of COVID-19. On the one hand, during 2020 it created a production line of plastic sanitary masks for medical personnel.
On the other hand, the company recently announced the signing of a final purchase agreement by the US converter Tekni-Plex, with which Phoenix Group becomes part of the US multinational to strengthen key areas of its business.