San Salvador has recently made its mark in the global startup ecosystem. With the enactment of the Innovation and Technological Manufacturing Promotion Law on June 5th, the city has entered the prestigious Global Startup Ecosystem Index (GSEI). StartupBlink, a renowned network of entrepreneurs and a research center mapping startup ecosystems worldwide, includes San Salvador among the top 1,000 cities with great potential for startup development and growth.
A Promising Ranking: In StartupBlink’s 2023 report, San Salvador secured the 715th position with a score of 0.247, making it one of the 14 cities to debut on the list this year. The top 10 cities in the index, ranked in order of importance, include San Francisco, New York, London, Los Angeles, Boston, Beijing, Shanghai, Bangalore, Paris, and Tel Aviv.
Latin American Presence: San Salvador’s inclusion in the GSEI is a testament to its emerging status in the startup landscape. Notable economic destinations in the Latin American region, such as São Paulo (Brazil), Mexico City (Mexico), Bogotá (Colombia), Buenos Aires (Argentina), and Santiago de Chile, also feature prominently on the index.
Supporting International Studies: International studies further endorse the positive environment for startups in El Salvador. A recent report by Torres Legal highlighted the surge in initiatives related to blockchain, cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin, and fintech. The study recognized the remarkable growth of the fintech sector, with 25 active fintech companies in the country. Among these, 80% are experiencing growth and expansion, 12% are in the development stage, and the remaining 8% are preparing for launch.
The report also categorized the fintech companies, revealing that 60% focus on payment solutions, 20% provide technology for financial institutions, 8% offer alternative financing platforms, and the rest specialize in personal and business finance management.
Government Support and Prospects: María Luisa Hayem, the Minister of Economy, announced that the implementation of the Innovation and Digital Manufacturing Promotion Law, which provides fiscal benefits, is expected to attract more companies to the country. The ministry has been diligently working on adapting systems to facilitate the digital processes for investors and entrepreneurs, including the use of electronic signatures.
Given these favorable conditions, the minister anticipates a surge in companies engaged in programming, system analysis, software development and commercialization, cloud computing services, and data flow management. Additionally, activities related to manufacturing parts, materials, equipment, and installations based on emerging technologies are expected to flourish.
San Salvador’s inclusion in the Global Startup Ecosystem Index showcases its potential as a hub for emerging businesses. With the recent legislative advancements and government support, the city is poised to attract more startups and foster technological innovation. As El Salvador embraces the opportunities presented by the digital era, San Salvador’s position on the global startup map is set to strengthen further.