Micro and Small Firms Booming in Brazil

The Brazilian Micro and Small Business Support Service (Sebrae) is holding a series of seminars in the whole country to celebrate the day, dedicated to the small enterprises. These companies are growing in the export market. In 1998 there were 5,778 small Brazilian exporting companies. Last year this number had increased to 7,000.

The micro and small companies, which together represent 98% of the 4.1 million services, industry and trade formal companies in Brazil, celebrate today  their day.


Sebrae, an organisation working since 1972 for the development of small businesses, is carrying out a series of activities throughout the country to commemorate the day. There will be seminars in the states of Rio de Janeiro, Maranhão, Paraí­ba, Rondônia and Rio Grande do Sul.


The small and micro companies answer to 20% of Brazil’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and employ 45% of the registered work force.


A recent research showed that 49.4% of the companies, which opened between the years of 2000, 2001 and 2002, closed down with up to 2 years of existence. Another 56.4% closed down after three years and 59.9% after four years.


Even with the high failure rate, the small business’ participation in the country’s exports is increasing.


The number of small exporting enterprises increased by 21% between 1998 and 2003, from 5,778 companies to 7,002. During that period, the segment’s foreign sales increased by 39.1%, reaching US$ 1.5 billion in 2003.


An A in Entrepreneurship


A study by Global Monitor in 31 countries on five continents shows that Brazil has risen from the seventh to the sixth in the entrepreneurship rank.


According to the study, released earlier this year, 12.9% of the labour in the country is opening new enterprises or has owned a business for less than one and a half years. This represents a total of 13.5 million enterprising Brazilians.


Fifty-three teams of university students from the state of Rio de Janeiro have enrolled in the state phase of the Support Service to the Small Business (Sebrae) 2004 Challenge. The objective of the Challenge is to spread entrepreneurial culture between Brazilian students in all areas.

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