International News: Hi-tech PR revolution gets under way in Latin America

BUENOS AIRES: The race to tap the potentially lucrative Latin American hi-tech market got a major boost earlier this month when two networks of PR agencies sprang up to challenge the multinationals’ chokehold on business in the region.

BUENOS AIRES: The race to tap the potentially lucrative Latin American hi-tech market got a major boost earlier this month when two networks of PR agencies sprang up to challenge the multinationals’ chokehold on business in the region.

BUENOS AIRES: The race to tap the potentially lucrative Latin

American hi-tech market got a major boost earlier this month when two

networks of PR agencies sprang up to challenge the multinationals’

chokehold on business in the region.



The two networks, both of which have set up headquarters in Buenos

Aires, are already in the process of formulating plans to snare US

hi-tech companies as well as local firms.



The bigger of the two is the PR Technology Group, launched earlier this

month by Argentine consultant Gustavo Martinez. Martinez owns GM

Comunicaciones, the firm that currently resides on top of the list of

local hi-tech firms. The network’s COO, Miami-based Eddie Sollie, is the

owner of IMG, an integrated shop. Sollie will coordinate account

activity in the region and hunt for US clients with communications needs

in Latin America.



The PR Technology Group is composed of GM’s subsidiaries in Chile,

Bolivia, Paraguay and Uruguay, as well as top Brazilian PR firm S2 and

the smaller Mexican Concepto Clave. Martinez said he has targeted

potential acquisitions in Venezuela and Peru that would strengthen the

network.



The other Latino hi-tech network is headed by Argentine consultant

Carlos Mazalan, head of Mazalan & Asociados. He has an office in

Santiago de Chile and, in February, added Venezuelan hi-tech shop Haz to

the network.





Haz boasts offices in Colombia and Caracas.



Among the multinationals with which the two fledgling networks are

expected to compete are Hill & Knowlton, which upped its Latin American

hi-tech presence last month through the acquisition of Mexico City-based

tech shop PREMIO (PRWeek, Feb. 14); and Manning Selvage & Lee, which

recently bought a 25% stake in Muchnik, Alurralde, Jasper & Asociados.



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