When people picture Silicon Valley, they imagine elaborate buildings with sleek modern architecture, large pristine windows among walkways and bike paths surrounded by trees, and carefully pruned foliage all overlooking sunny California. Sure, that’s where it all started, and— although it has changed some from its golden years in the mid-2000s— it continues to hold a certain mystique and allure for those working in tech. Throughout the decades, however, tech hubs sprouted all over the world, forming small clusters of tech-savvy innovators looking for the next big powerhouse idea. Latin America is no different. In the Mexico’s IT industry, for example, several of its cities earn reputations as growing tech cities.
Tech in Mexico is diverse and varies by region. Here’s a review of some of Mexico’s leading tech regions and 3 out of the 5 best sites to hire developers, engineers, or other tech talent.
Tech Hubs in the United States
In the United States, certain cities such as Austin and Raleigh, North Carolina have become surprising additions to the list of bustling tech ecosystems. CompTIA’s report and latest Tech Town Index, indicate that some of the best tech cities for IT jobs include Tallahassee, Florida, Hartford, Connecticut, Des Moines, Iowa, and Colorado Springs, Colorado.
These cities are not often thought of as the ‘tech hubs’ of the U.S. and yet the rise of different cities indicates just how fluid the industry is and how the concentration of tech jobs often shifts. At the same time, the difference in cost of living within some of these cities might mean the talent gets to take more money home and that’s always a key factor when looking at a tech hub— whether you are an employer or a software developer.
A similar picture emerges from our Southern neighbor. In Mexico, certain cities have also seen unsuspecting growth and investment that have landed them the title of “tech hub.”
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Mexico’s Tech Industry and It’s Growing Tech Hubs
We all understand the meaning of “tech hub,” although there are no distinct and standardized markers that indicate when a city or region has tipped over into the territory of a “hub.”
Tech hubs are defined by communities that promote innovation and investment for companies that are technology-based or operating in the tech sector. Not only that, but a tech hub is a concentration of the tech talent, investors, education, and companies in one place looking to create solutions to the world’s problems via technology. There are many characteristics that ultimately make a hub worthy of the name. This includes the types of industries in the area, the concentration of tech communities thanks to large employers or educational institutions, investment opportunities that encourage business creation, and much more. We’ll take a look at some of these factors for some of the most popular regions in Mexico.
Mexico’s Booming Tech Regions
Like the U.S., Mexico is divided into states. Each state has its leading industry, its unique landscape, and even its own culture and customs, sometimes even its own accents. Depending on what region of the country, each state might have a propensity for supporting certain types of companies and industries based on their established infrastructure, trading partners, top exports, agriculture, regional history, etc.
For companies looking to expand their operations or grow their remote tech team, here’s what you need to know about the various regions in Mexico. Let’s look at three of the main 5 regions in the country.
Jalisco — Main City: Guadalajara
We’ve written before about Guadalajara’s status as Mexico’s Silicon Valley due to its history hosting energy and tech companies, institutions of higher learning, and robust industries. This remains true and Guadalajara is still one of the main tech hubs in Mexico and one with a growing interest and industry around tech.
Region Profile Overview:
As pointed out in our Mexico Tech Salaries Report 2023, Guadalajara is the “techiest” of the cities. The city has several technical institutes and universities, a robust fintech sector, and several social & leisure and software startups.
According to Crunchbase, Jalisco has 999 of growing organizations and top investor types of venture capital, accelerator, and venture debt. The diversity of industries in the region ranges from technology, mining, and other products.
Some examples of the organizations in the region:
- Lefuffer Mining Group: A mining and energy company
- Toolsnet: A company that provides cloud computing solutions and consulting
- Gamers: Retail company offering mobile and software products for gaming and entertainment
Some of the companies investing in the Jalisco region include accelerators and venture capital firms from the U.S. including Colorado, California, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and more.
Why hire software developers and engineers in Jalisco?
Like many regions in the United States, Mexico’s tech market has gone largely ‘remote first.’ This means that software developers and engineers working out of the country heavily favor working remotely and hybrid work. Yet, the region continues to draw in many of the country’s most active tech professionals looking for opportunities and a community that is friendly to the tech industry.
Salary in the Western Region of Mexico
The Western Region average salary for tech professionals based on our 2023 data is at about $3,180 USD. This average salary will vary considerably based on experience, role, and other factors.
Mexico State — Main City: Mexico City
Due to its concentration in population and size, Mexico City is often considered a region in and of itself. Here, we’ll look at Mexico City as the central hub with the rest of the state supporting many of these industries.
Region Profile Overview:
Mexico City is the business capital of Mexico. It is known for its professional, metropolitan, and corporate air, as well as its growing startup ecosystem. The region is ideal for ecommerce, fintech, and education startups.
Given the saturation in population and the demand for better and more efficient banking services, Mexico City has raked up about 277 fintech startups. This sector is particularly thriving in this region because of the concentration of industries and businesses active in the area.
According to Crunchbase, the top investor types in Mexico City include Venture Capital, Private Equity Firms, Accelerators, Micro VC, and Angel Groups. Some notable companies operating in the region include Kavak (the darling of Mexican unicorns), Bitso (the cryptocurrency exchange platform), KIO Networks (a digital infrastructure company).
Why hire remote tech talent from Mexico City?
The region is known for producing high-level tech talent that comes out of the country’s most prestigious institutions and makes its way to Mexico City to look for new opportunities.
The average salary for tech workers in the Central region according to 2023 data is about $3,960 USD. Like all salary averages, it varies based on years of experience, role, and specialization. At the same time, Mexico City’s cost of living tends to be higher than some of the other regions in the country, which kicks up the average salary as compared to other regions.
Nuevo Leon — Main City: Monterrey
The capital city in the northern state of Nuevo Leon is Monterrey and the 3rd largest metropolitan area in Mexico. The capital is home to about 89% of the state’s population and has had an industrial-fueled economy for a long time. This city is considered the more industrious city, often dubbed the “national capital of advanced industry.” This concentration of industry helps make the state a stable economy and society. Monterrey focuses on consulting and supporting services, employing many people who work in these services for national and international companies.
Region profile overview:
As stated above, Nuevo Leon is known as a hub for many industries, among those the automotive and energy sectors.
Some of the top companies in the region include those in the aerospace, automotive, appliance, medical device, and electronics sectors including:
- Pratt & Whitney
- United Technologies
- Mercedes Benz
- John Deere
- Arvin Meritor
- Emerson Electric
- Johnson & Johnson
- Smith Medical
- And more
What about the startup scene in the region? According to Crunchbase, the top investor types in the region include Micro VC, Syndicate, Hedge Fund, Accelerator, Angel Group.
Why hire software developers and engineers in Nuevo Leon?
The state is an attractive destination for expanding operations and hiring tech talent because of its proximity to the United States and its great connectivity. When it comes to remote teams, this makes travel to the region fast and efficient.
For companies expanding operations and starting new offices or operations in the region, the geography allows for back-and-forth travel that help companies stay close to their teams.
The fact that several companies are established there creates stability in the region and helps fund education and job training. According to the American Industries Group, the state received 326 foreign direct investment projects from various countries including the U.S., South Korea, Japan, Germany, China, and more. U.S. investment has by far the largest investment there.
According to our 2023 report, the average salary for tech professionals in the Northeast region, which includes Nuevo Leon and Monterrey, is about $3,180 USD per month, slightly lower than the Central and Western regions.
Tech in Mexico: Find Diverse Talent in Diverse Regions
Today, every industry is experiencing changes to their operations. For more information on these regions or to see some comparisons in salaries between Mexico and Latin American regions in more detail, download our Mexico Tech Salaries report. This is an inside look at tech in Mexico and its many unique qualities and characteristics.
After the pandemic, remote work really took off in Mexico and throughout Latin America. This means that so many of Mexico’s most experienced tech professionals can work for international companies without moving from their home countries.
This has become more and more common. Our 2023 report, showed that 26.7% of working tech professionals are already working for U.S. companies.
Connect with our team on the ground and learn what region can offer you the best tech talent for your company.