São Paulo, Brazil

São Paulo is considered the “financial capital of Brazil”, as it is the location for the headquarters of many major corporations and the country’s most renowned banks and financial institutions. São Paulo is Brazil’s highest GDP city and the 10th largest in the world, using Purchasing power parity. According to data of IBGE, its gross domestic product (GDP) is R$ 450 billion, approximately US$220 billion, 12.26% of Brazilian GDP and 36% of all production of goods and services of the State of São Paulo. According to PricewaterhouseCoopers average annual economic growth of the city is 4.2%. São Paulo also has a large “informal” economy. The city of São Paulo collects R$ 90 billion in taxes and the city budget is R$ 15 billion. The city has 1,500 bank branches and 70 shopping malls. The São Paulo Stock Exchange (BM&F Bovespa) is Brazil’s official stock and bond exchange. It is the largest stock exchange in Latin America, trading about R$ 6 billion (US$ 3.5 billion) every day. São Paulo’s economy is going through a deep transformation. Once a city with a h2 industrial character, São Paulo’s economy has followed the global trend of shifting to the tertiary sector of the economy, focusing on services. The city is unique among Brazilian cities for its large number of foreign corporations. 63% of all the international companies with business in Brazil have their head offices in São Paulo. São Paulo has the largest concentration of German businesses worldwide and is the largest Swedish industrial hub alongside Gothenburg. São Paulo ranked second after New York in FDi magazine’s bi-annual ranking of Cities of the Future in the Americas, and was named the Latin American City of the Future, overtaking Santiago de Chile, the first city in the previous ranking. Santiago now ranks second, followed by Rio de Janeiro. The city of São Paulo is home to research and development facilities and attracts companies due to the presence of several regionally renowned universities. Science, technology and innovation is leveraged by the allocation of funds from the state government, mainly carried out by means of the Foundation to Research Support in the State of São Paulo (Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo – FAPESP), one of the main agencies promoting scientific and technological research.