Latin America offers compelling opportunities to U.S. private equity investors, partly because its economies are squarely in the emerging category and partly because of geography. It’s a short hop to many of these locations, and even the most remote are close to U.S. time zones. But the list of countries and economies within LatAm that represent the best opportunities can be a wildly volatile one. Case in point – Mexico, which for a long time was low on the list of prospects, has bounded to the top, surpassing even Brazil as a place where private equity firms are putting money to work. The region has faced myriad challenges over the past year, including the threat of the Zika virus.
But volatility within the region spells opportunities for many PE investors focused on distressed properties. And investors in the region take the long view, not getting bogged down in short-term issues, such as the Olympics or U.S. presidential politics. The region is also benefitting from developments outside it. China’s loss may be Latin America’s gain, as investors look to countries including Mexico to shorten the chain between production and consumption.