Invest Puerto Rico, the island’s new economic development engine, shared today a robust, data-driven plan to promote Puerto Rico as an investment destination and help usher in the island’s next great economic transformation.
CEO Rodrick Miller said that the promotional plan—based on research and analysis of global mega-trends, economic data, perceptions, disruptive factors and Puerto Rico’s existing competitive advantages—will guide the promotion of the island in key markets in the United States and abroad with a core focus on attracting companies in the Knowledge Services sectors.
This targeted approach follows a global best practice of pursuing sector-focused promotional activities and aligns with the organization’s vision to be a transformational and results-oriented accelerator of economic development in Puerto Rico, Miller stated.
The extensive research and analysis conducted by Invest Puerto Rico revealed that Puerto Rico is strongly suited to pursue new businesses in the Knowledge Services sector—which includes Professional and Technical Services, Business Support Services, Software and IT, and Finance & Insurance.
The entity will prioritize promotional efforts on these target sectors but will also allow for longer term nurturing of existing industry capacity as well as adjustment based on changing trends and potential disruptive events. Invest Puerto Rico will focus on promoting Puerto Rico in these target sectors, while collaborating with the Department of Economic Development and Commerce (DDEC by its Spanish acronym) in the retention and capacity building of Puerto Rico’s mature and productive industrial sector.
Identifies sectors with the greatest opportunities for growth, stresses cultural bonds between nations
“We are excited about building on the economic transformation that is already underway in Puerto Rico. We have laid the foundation to accelerate this transition by creating a robust organization based on best practices and by developing a robust data-backed strategy that aligns with local market realities, takes advantage of global industry trends and builds on ecosystem capacities,” said Miller. “This plan charts the path for successful and sustained new business attraction to bring jobs, opportunity and prosperity to the people of Puerto Rico.”
Manuel Laboy Rivera, DDEC secretary and InvestPR’s Chairman of the Board, said, “through Invest Puerto Rico’s new plan, we can amplify the promotion of the island worldwide and attract new business, while the government can focus on retaining investment, cultivating existing relationships with current companies and improving the ease of doing business. Puerto Rico is a win-win business unique alternative for investors.”
The plan plots the organization’s activity across four overlapping areas: targeting for focus, competitive image building, activating channels and pipeline management.
Over the course of the plan’s implementation, the Invest Puerto Rico team will deploy actions across diverse channels—including personal networks, digital and traditional media, conferences and events, and a dedicated website—to engage with potential investors and deliver the right messages regarding Puerto Rico’s value proposition. These efforts will be focused geographically in key markets in the United States, where high taxes are driving relocation considerations, and Europe.
The promotional plan is designed to raise awareness of Puerto Rico as an attractive investment destination, generate high-quality leads of companies that could relocate their operations to the island, and facilitate actions through the provision of proper service-levels and follow-up efforts to close deals and achieve desired outcomes.
In the months leading to the sharing of the promotional plan, the organization’s initial efforts following this strategy have yielded a robust pipeline of 2,000 leads and engaged in direct contact and servicing with more than 80 companies considering Puerto Rico as an investment destination. The officials claimed that InvestPR has been a driving force in the recent surge of new business investment—just last year there was 38 percent increase in incentive decrees approved.
Puerto Rico is currently 82 percent HUBZone-designated while the U.S. Virgin Islands is 100 percent HUBZone- designated
While the plan’s primary focus is direct attraction efforts, the research also illuminated gaps in Puerto Rico’s global competitiveness underscoring the need to include strategies to strengthen Puerto Rico’s competitive posture.
Competitiveness issues highlighted include improving the talent landscape, reducing the complexity of doing business, and strengthening core infrastructure amongst others. The importance of working in partnership with a broad range of stakeholders, nonprofit partners, business leaders, and the government was a prominent refrain throughout the plan.
“The Chamber of Commerce had the chance to review and discuss the promotional plan with InvestPR; we are confident that the strategy laid out is the most effective tool to execute a successful investment promotion program and leverage the resources from local stakeholder groups. We look forward to working together in the coming years implementing this strategy and collaborating to showcase Puerto Rico as a premier global investment destination,” stated José E. Ledesma-Fuentes, Puerto Rico Chamber of Commerce President and Chairman of the Board.
“We intend to become the leading organization in Puerto Rico’s economic development ecosystem through the consistent execution of our plan, and with the indispensable support of our partners in the public, private and non-profit sectors, who will undoubtedly add value to our operation and contribute to our success,” Miller said.
Recognizing the need to improve Puerto Rico’s promotion efforts to compete in the global marketplace, Invest Puerto Rico was created through the approval of Act 13-2017 with the mission to promote Puerto Rico as a competitive investment jurisdiction to attract new business and capital investment to the island. For more information, visit www.investpr.org.
Editor's note: A more detailed version of this development will be published on the December 25 print edition of The Weekly Journal and on www.theweeklyjournal.com.