In 2016, as Elon Musk unveiled his master plan to take humans to Mars in the 2020s, news that the city of Guadalajara would be Mexico’s Silicon Valley went viral. Numerous major US newspapers were talking about how multinational companies like IBM, Oracle, Intel, HP, Dell, and Gamesoft were choosing the city of tequila to develop the next generation of tech teams.
Given Guadalajara’s popularity amongst tech firms, both the Mexican Government and MIT chose it to be the home of their “Digital Creative City” project, investing a large sum of funds to build its infrastructure and truly develop it as Mexico’s Silicon Valley. Since then, it has become the core of Mexico’s IT software industry.
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Why is Guadalajara important to the tech world?
Guadalajara is the second largest city in Mexico with a population of just over 4 million people and some of the most renowned universities in Mexico such as the Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Occidente, Universidad Autónoma de Guadalajara, Universidad de Guadalajara.
The city also hosts some of the top tech events in the country, a powerful attraction for groups of talented young people in programming, computational engineering, and robotics.
These are some of the reasons why more than 600 technology-focused companies have established their bases of operations in Guadalajara or hundreds more that have hired remote engineers here.
Guadalajara has earned the nickname of the “Silicon Valley of Mexico” by making itself a top destination for all tech companies, big and small, as well as fostering a tech ecosystem through STEM programs. When taking all of this into account, the comparison makes sense.
A history of development and innovation
Over the last forty years, the Mexican government, private companies, and American universities such as MIT invested significantly in Guadalajara to make it the central Digital Creative City in Mexico.
Achieving this meant designing a digital district in a span of over 100 acres where tech professionals could live and work. It also meant implementing an innovative sustainable infrastructure, state-of-the art services and attracting foreign companies.
All this with the objective of creating a world-class environment for companies, institutions and Mexican talent to develop the technologies of tomorrow and to foster innovation.
But is it really the “Silicon Valley” of Mexico?
The reason Silicon Valley became what it became was more than just the availability of talent and infrastructure. There was an attitude of innovation and a daring drive that put the slight stretch of central California office buildings into the forefront of worldwide tech innovation.
Guadalajara, as evidenced by tech conferences like Talent Land and successful startup stories like Digitt and Aspirina, shares a similar ruthless energy building through collaborative innovation as California. Both nonprofits committed to developing a culture of innovation and the rising startup tide continue to cultivate talent, making Guadalajara an appealing landing pad for tech companies and a destination for hiring great talent.
Guadalajara by the numbers
Total tech talent pool: 115,000 software developers
Most common developer roles: Full Stack Developer, Technical Support Engineer, Quality Assurance Engineer, Back End Developer, Project Manager
Average salary for:
- Full stack developer – $3,156/month ($8,250/month in U.S.)
- Back End Developer – $3,379/month ($7,250/month in U.S.)
- Front End Developer – $2,871/month ($6,333/month in U.S.)
Major tech companies in the area:
Whether you are looking to expand your team through near sourcing, hire new tech talent, or build, operate, and transfer a new division of your company, Guadalajara, Jalisco has a lot to offer.
To learn more about Guadalajara and other regions in Mexico and how they compare to other outsourcing destinations, be sure to download our Tech Salaries Report 2021.
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