Google to invest $1.2B in Latin America
Google will invest $1.2 billion over five years in Latin America to support digital investment and skills, CEO Sundar Pichai announced Thursday.
Why it matters: The investment shows Latin America's increasing importance as a market for digital growth.
Driving the news: In a blog post, Pichai said the funding will be used for digital infrastructure, online training programs, and supporting start-ups and nonprofits.
- Google, which is building a subsea cable that will run from the U.S. to Argentina when finished in 2023, said it intends to expand its engineering footprint in Brazil.
- To improve digital skills, the company will offer scholarships for Google Career Certificates, which train people for jobs in IT and project management, to one million people in Latin America.
- The philanthropic arm, Google.org, will award $300 million via $50 million in cash grants and $250 million in donated ads to nonprofits in sustainability and economic opportunity for women.
The big picture: The Latin America funding comes after Google made a similar pledge to invest $1 billion in Africa in October.
- "We've seen how the emerging markets generally, and Latin America specifically, have adjusted to the pandemic world and the level of adoption of digital technologies that we're seeing throughout the continent," Karan Bhatia, Google vice president of government affairs and policy, told Axios in an interview.
- "We're bullish on what we're seeing in terms of growth opportunities there."
The bottom line: More, better network connections and broader use of digital tools in Latin America and elsewhere means more potential users of Google products.