The Mexicans they do not invest enough in their country. Neither money nor time. From the garbage that is thrown in the Sumidero Canyon to the little time that people get involved in politics and even the little investment in productive projects that the country is doing. “Made in Mexico” is a brand without much foundation, without drive and without enough ambition. It surprises me and today I leave you that reflection, focusing on one more message for Mexican entrepreneurs.
On the subject of CureVac, the vaccine that arrived for the test in its third phase at TecSalud, I know that the company was funded by Dietmar Hopp, one of the co-founders of SAP. Hopp has invested and donated more than 30 billion pesos in biotechnology and medicine. When the German Strüngmann twins funded the research of later BioNTech founders, they bought into the idea. The Strüngmanns sold their company to Novartis and continued to invest in medicine. It is called investment in progress and investment in “R&D” (Research and Development). The “family offices” in Germany, a fundamental part of the private initiative, have had a good approach.
What approach do family offices have in Mexico, would be a good question. I have interacted with some but I perceive that they are more focused on a short-term return, real estate towers and many times they invest outside of Mexico. Make money here on Mexican soil and then get it out. Why don’t they invest more in Mexico if they could make their wealth here? Certainty for and about investment is so, so crucial. It must be demanded, especially with the Government, and it must be generated by investing in your country. The Strüngmann twins reinvested their money in Germany. Andreas and Thomas Strüngmann did not walk away with the approximately € 5.5 billion from the sale of their Hexal company, but instead decided to invest heavily in the young field of medical genetic engineering and BioNTech research that is saving millions of lives in this moment was the result. Venture capital investment is all about doing business, but what better way to invest in the healthcare sector. There is even a philanthropic theme within these investments. “Help people”. But in Mexico “to a large extent” governments have been corrupt for years and private initiative has invested in its own interests.
Do you realize that there is a common root cause? Mexican greed, once being in an important position of getting rich, of even scrubbing another Mexican to get up. Or when another Mexican manages to climb, they seek to question him or even defame him. It is a type of novel that is part of Mexican culture. Strong but true. I trust that in Mexico there are still thousands and millions who think very differently and we must act in the field that concerns us to combat impunity and improvisation. Defame another Mexican, promote the political novel and misuse economic power, I consider that it is the true betrayal.
Investment in Mexico and in R&D is key because, if well invested by the IP and the Government, the result will be added value with return on investment. Mexico still lacks added value and generate it. Mexico lacks a clear and united direction in general and on most issues. For now, it is necessary to invest in the implementation and distribution of the vaccine. It is a key factor where once the vaccines have been received, an organized and massive application must be achieved. In Germany there are already thousands of vaccination centers, many also in the many spacious fairgrounds where thousands of people can be vaccinated in one day. Also understand that not everything is perfect, much less in Germany. Although on the one hand Angela Merkel did an excellent job of measuring the impact of Covid-19, we “developed” the first BioNTech vaccine and we have the vaccination centers already ready, the policy through the European Union and shortcomings in ensuring production and local distribution have many of my countrymen still waiting for the first vaccination. The US has been doing an extraordinary job in activating mass production with Pfizer and Moderna. For Mexico, “we will all be vaccinated during 2022. They told me that Mexico already has a world-class professional and promising DNA vaccine project created with the royal support of the spin-off of the Gould-Stephano Institute that has been developing for 10 months and is only now occupying more investment from private initiative. This vaccine has the repeatability (boosters) of messenger RNA vaccines (ie Pfizer, Moderna, CureVac). In that, he must see “hopefully” learning to work on a serious investment plan and policies for Mexico. Lower regulatory hurdles and the value of investing in “Made in Mexico.” If we analyze which and how many products have the “CE” seal of “China Export” I ask, which of those products could not have been “Made in Mexico”? I firmly believe that “Made in Mexico” is worth it, but political and business decision makers do not believe or invest enough in their own country, thus closing the current young generation with a devastating panorama without job opportunities and with the confidence that Mexico will continue with more of the same.
I am very clear that this is what a new Mexican “Mindset” is working for. To break paradigms. Both the effort and that of the National Association of Independent Entrepreneurs to empower and develop SMEs is just as important to create opportunities and productivity for the best that their country, its people and the talented young generation of Mexico have. Let’s give more time, opportunities, investment and resources to young people. We must worry and develop them. If not, we get even more lost on TikTok and other networks. I believe that the opportunity cost has never been higher in Mexican history of not investing in its people. And not only in the pharmaceutical sector there is a lot of dynamism, need and opportunities. In ten years, automotive assemblers will have mostly electric models. I wonder if Mexico is going to be able to build that strong, innovative and competitive supply chain? I believe that it can be done and there is a great long-term opportunity for Mexico to become a strategic supplier in multiple niches.
Speaking of the education sector, José Antonio Fernández announced that they want to “create a better future together.” It does me very well, but how far can a private university like Tec de Monterrey go with and for Mexico without a truly broader vision and execution? This development approach must be multiplied in more universities and especially in public ones to create real and massive opportunities and generate institutions and companies where we use Mexican talent well. What Mexico occupies is a 2050 plan, in which Mexican people get involved and are really interested in Mexico. Overcome ignorance and disinterest to excel with and for Mexico. I trust the country and its people. They can always do very well when they team up to reach that “Mexican Dream.” Ignorance, improvisation and the lack of functional investment in the country must be fought. I agree that there are many better incentives in Europe and the US, but Mexico has other competitive advantages. Mexico has the raw material of thousands of PhDs and students. Germany increasingly lacks future talent and workforce of its own, the human resource of millions of young people. That is why there and in the US they encourage and invite the brightest minds to go to their country. I believe that Mexico has a young generation with which it can be possible to be a country without poverty and with enormous development. Sad would be that only I believe it and the current leaders do not. Sometimes I think, why do I trust and believe more in Mexico than the Mexicans themselves? That is why we employ better political and business leaders who eradicate improvisation and lack of investment in their own country. If you have a company, invest in giving jobs and employment to more young people. Hopefully we can implement dual education even in the crisis.
This is an opinion column. The expressions used here are the sole responsibility of the person signing them and do not necessarily reflect the editorial position of El Financiero.