GUILLERMO LARA GÓMEZ

Mexico 2020 | TELECOMS & IT | INTERVIEW

Mexico offers this Brazilian-based tech company opportunities in the digital transformation of the country's financial, retail, and pharmaceutical sectors.

Guillermo Lara Gómez
BIOGRAPHY

Guillermo Lara Gómez has a wide range of experience in the technology sector. He has a master's in science and a passion for business that drove him to become commercial director for Stefanini from 2013 to 2017. During his time in this role, he added important clients to the company's portfolio and increased rentability. He is now the firm's Country Manager in Mexico.

Can you elaborate on Mexico's role in the company's strategy?
Mexico and Spanish-speaking Latin America are extremely important for the company because the region generates a great deal of value for the company. We are not at the revenue levels of other regions, such as North America or Brazil. Mexico within Spanish-speaking Latin America has the largest revenues. Mexico is also a hub for technology. We have many services for digital transformation, and Mexico is key due to its close relation with the US. It is part of the nearshore approach that the company has for North America, South America, and other parts of the world. Today, amid this turmoil, Mexico is extremely important for Latam and all regions where Stefanini works.

What added value do you offer?
We are convinced that companies are evolving in terms of efficiency and quality toward digital transformation. Most businesses are convinced that digital transformation is just acquiring new technology, though that is not the case. This transformation starts with culture and people, which we at Stefanini consider one of the most important challenges. We must ensure that companies understand that a mindset change is required to correctly implement the digital transformation. Since 2008, we have invested in developing an innovation ecosystem that includes technology accelerators or mechanisms to change businesses' mindsets. That is the first step needed for digital transformation and is the most important part of the process.

What is the biggest challenge that digital transformation faces in Mexico?
Companies need to realize they first need to work on cultural challenges before starting to implement digital strategies. In addition, it is important to correctly define a transformational roadmap that allows companies to be supported by companies like ours. In addition to those challenges, we are in a volatile and uncertain scenario that is extremely challenging. We should make sure companies are convinced that the transformation process is required, and they need to be entrepreneurial in order to succeed.

How has the company fared during the COVID-19 crisis?
Our most important projects are connected to the banking sector, and we have launched many solutions for our clients during the COVID-19 pandemic. More than 60% of our revenues come from large banking groups, including stock brokers, insurance companies, and banks. We provide more than 1 million hours annually to these companies collectively to maintain applications. We mostly focus on three areas—the financial sector, retail, and pharmaceuticals—which has ensured the company has been barely affected by the pandemic. Though manufacturing industry has been impacted, that has not been our case, because our clients can work remotely.

What services do you offer to Mexico through new technologies?
We have a service called “Bank in a Box," which has matured more in Brazil because we have a call center related to the management of credit and debit cards. We have also a venture that offers microfinances services and prevention of money laundering. Through that, we have created a marketplace that is large enough to offer many combined services. We have also reinforced our cybersecurity services, which is becoming extremely profitable in the challenging current environment.
What is the advantage of being a Latam-based technology company versus a company based in the US or Europe?
We are a global player, but with a Latin American approach. We are extremely competitive; we have great solutions and work with some of the best brands in the market and the largest companies in the world. A value that has distinguished us is that we always have an agnostic approach. Our motto is something along the lines of "Falling in love with the problem and looking together for the best solution." We know our advantages, but perhaps a client does not need the solution we might offer, but a different one. Thus, we should always offer an agnostic approach and focus on user experience. We always end up choosing the best solution for each client.