Good morning, Santiago! We had the honor and unique opportunity to visit several exciting companies on day 5 of our study trip.
The day started off with a meeting with the head of R&D for the LATAM region Aline Mor. We gained first-hand insight into how she built the new R&D center and why Nestlé chose the strategic location of Chile for its LATAM representation. Apart from the official presentation the IM2020 class had several questions not only regarding the process of internationalization but also about how culture is implemented or how the corporate culture is lived by all employees at Nestlé regardless of which part of the world they are working in. As Nestlé’s R&D team says “Failure is not Testing” implying that testing a new product is not a failure rather it is the heart of gaining knowledge on a specific product and innovating it consistently.
Following the presentation and an extended Q&A session we had the chance to partake in a tour through one of Nestlé’s local production facilities where the popular ice cream brand “Savory” is produced. We gained insights into the production process and how different cooling and packaging systems are applied in this facility. Furthermore, our guide happily answered questions regarding safety, the work environment, and most importantly the automatization of manual labor.
Throughout the visit, it was evident that Nestlé values the safety of their employees and customers very highly, as there is a strict code of conduct for safety on the premises and when it comes to developing a new product for its customers.
Corporación de Fomento de la Producción
Our second stop was Corfo, where the Chilean Economic Development Agency is at home. Corfo’s Executive Coordinator Rosa Tamayo Olivares shared the challenges the country is currently facing and what role the agency plays. Its vision is to achieve a modern development model which more equitable and sustainable while considering gender equality and creating a territorially balanced community.
A great part of Corfo’s work is the Chilean Innovation Agency, which is connected worldwide with countries such as Germany, Switzerland, South Korea, France, and more! It furthermore assists about 2’000 start-ups per year.
Our third stop was the public agency InvestChile, which is responsible for the promotion and attraction of Foreign Direct Investment to Chile. It advises more than 700 companies per year and currently supports more than 480 projects. As of 2021, their portfolio of projects comprises a value of USD 27 billion.
Essentially, it promotes productive linkages with the local economic framework of Chile and therefore maintains the transfer of technology, skill, and knowledge. Besides that, it generates quality jobs and expands the production and export matrices.
We got interesting insights into Chile’s current economic situation and the various investment opportunities in the Latin American Hub. So, why invest in Chile?
- The country is the number one player in Latin America. Chile shares the same time zone as North America and has a robust foreign investment regime
- Foreign companies based in Chile enjoy the same rights and obligations as Chilean companies in the country
- National legislation allows the free flow of capital and profits
- Chile has a pro-business environment; It is easy to set up companies and the tax structure is simple
- Chile’s current agenda of President Boric’s government is committed to boosting investment
Cocktail at the Swiss Residence
After a short break in the hotel to suit up, the program of the day continued with a visit to the Swiss Residence of the embassy. We had the pleasure to meet various employees working at the embassy as well as the current Swiss Ambassador in Chile, Markus Dutly. Throughout the week the intern Elise Jocteur-Monrozier had the opportunity to join us for several days and network with the IM2020 class of ZHAW. She gave us a detailed and highly interesting presentation which started with an overview of the development of Swiss-Chilean relations followed by a description of the tasks of an embassy and consulate. She further explained how an embassy can have various organizations within its structure like the Swiss Business Hub Chile or the Swiss Global Enterprise. The presentation ended with a creative quiz where the winning team was awarded a gift.
Following the presentation and the quiz, we had the chance to talk to the ambassador and his team during a welcoming Apéro with delicious appetizers known in the region and a welcome cocktail. Many of us took that chance to network with our Swiss comrades working abroad by asking various questions about their careers, experience, and reasons to choose the path they took. As International Management students we have an international focus when it comes to business and culture, and this event gave deep insights into an industry that some of us might want to take foot in.
The visit to the Swiss Residency marked the end of another interesting day of the study trip. We would like to thank Nestlé, Corfo, InvestChile, and the Swiss Ambassador for receiving us and enabling us to learn more about their respective fields.