In Mexico, 85 fintechs are seeking permission to operate

black and white business chart computer
Photo by Lorenzo on Pexels.com

09/27/19 – Reuters

By Stefanie Eschenbacher

Mexican banking regulator CNBV said on Thursday it received applications from 85 companies to formally operate in the country under its new fin-tech law as the government of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador pushes for more financial inclusion.

The government has been looking to both banks and fin-techs as it aims to reduce cash in circulation to cut down on money laundering and corruption, and to draw more people into the formal economy.

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Mexico’s Energy Reform Gives Birth to New Private Oil Company

10/01/14 Wall Street Journal 

energy- oil pumps 2In the wake of an energy overhaul that ends Mexico’s state oil monopoly, a new exploration and production company was born with the name Sierra Oil & Gas, which Chief Executive Ivan Sandrea says already has a wealth of global expertise. “We’re pretty big for a baby,” he said on Wednesday. Sierra said last month it had secured equity commitments of $525 million from U.S.-based private-equity firms Riverstone Holdings LLC and EnCap Investments, along with Mexican private-equity fund Infraestructura Institucional. Mr. Sandrea said his team has a combined 350 years of experience, and most of its members have worked in the industry in Mexico. They are currently preparing for Mexico’s first bidding round for oil and gas blocks, set for next year.

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Competition will force Pemex to come up with slicker act

09/23/14 Financial Times

pemex2Wanted: sharp new image for septuagenarian Mexican company with loyal following and the kind of brand recognition many companies would kill for. It sounds like an advertising agency’s dream. But the company in question is widely believed to be bloated, corrupt and inefficient. Its ability to maintain its market share in future is by no means guaranteed, and though it faces immediate challenges, it will not be able to deliver results overnight. The company is Pemex, the state oil producer, which is facing competition for the first time since its creation in 1938, under a landmark reform pushed through by Enrique Peña Nieto, Mexico’s president. Legislation that will open the sector to private investment was passed in August. Private oil companies, including foreign groups, are expected to start piling in next year.

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Mexico’s President Pushes Reforms for State Oil Company Pemex

Enrique PeñaNieto 2Bloomberg, 6/20/2013

Petróleos Mexicanos, known as Pemex, has long been the third rail of Mexican politics. The state-owned company, originally based on oil fields seized from foreign owners over 70 years ago, has produced sizable government revenue and union jobs for hundreds of thousands of Mexicans. Foreign investment has been largely restricted.

But now Pemex’s main asset, the giant Cantarell offshore field, is shrinking fast. The company says it needs to boost annual investment by 46 percent, to $37 billion, to tap undeveloped shale-gas deposits and deep-water reserves. Without some private capital and expertise from abroad, Mexico risks becoming an importer in the next decade. Many of Mexico’s politicians and policymakers have known this for years. Yet Mexican nationalism, resistance from the unions, and the sheer size of the task of transforming Pemex have stood in the way.

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Pena Nieto Confident 75-Year Pemex Oil Monopoly to End This Year

Angelica Rivera (Flickr)Bloomberg, 6/18/2013

Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto said he’s confident Congress will end the state oil monopoly this year, opening the way for companies such as Exxon Mobil Corp. and Royal Dutch Shell Plc to tap the nation’s reserves. In the model envisioned by Pena Nieto, state-owned Petroleos Mexicanos would develop some fields, while others are tapped by foreign and private companies. He declined to discuss more details of the proposal, or whether it would require a change in the constitution.

Seven decades after his party seized fields from the predecessors to Exxon and Shell, Pena Nieto is preparing for the return of international oil companies to arrest eight years of decline in crude output. An opening would probably be broad, from offshore drilling to shale fields similar to those that have revived the U.S. petroleum industry, Pena Nieto said. “It’s obvious that Pemex doesn’t have the financial capacity to be in every single front of energy generation,” the 46-year-old president said in an interview in London yesterday, before traveling to Northern Ireland for meetings with Group of Eight leaders. “Shale is one of the areas where there’s room for private companies, but not the only one.”

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Mexico in Talks to Open Energy Sector to Private Investors

PemexThe Wall Street Journal, 6/17/2013

President Enrique Peña Nieto will seek in the coming months to end a taboo of nearly eight decades by opening the state-run oil and gas industry to private investment and competition, a move the government hopes will attract billions of dollars in investment. Mr. Peña Nieto’s government wants to allow private energy firms to share the risks involved in developing increasingly complex energy reserves such as deep water oil deposits by letting them produce oil and gas through profit-sharing deals, according to three high-level government and ruling party officials who gave details of the proposed reform for the first time.

The proposal, which would involve amending several articles of Mexico’s Constitution, will need two-thirds support from Mexico’s Congress. But officials say they are optimistic that they can get at least one of the two main opposition parties to back the plan without drastic changes. Formal negotiations will likely start after local elections on July 7, with a bill presented to Congress as early as August, the officials said.

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The new face of Mexican policing

Jesus Villaseca (Flickr)
Jesus Villaseca (Flickr)

The Economist, 6/13/2013

ON ONE side of a low hill in the middle of Monterrey, Mexico’s biggest industrial city, lies Independencia, a district so run down that donkeys still carry heavy goods to the top. On the other side is San Pedro Garza García, one of Latin America’s most affluent neighbourhoods and home to some of its biggest companies.

In the past four years, the yawning social divide between them has been bridged by violence. First, the sound of gun battles between drug gangs fighting in Independencia carried over the hill to the mansions of San Pedro. Then the killings began in San Pedro itself. In a place once considered by its residents to be safer than Texas, just a few hours’ drive away, murders, carjackings and extortion became everyday occurrences. Some rich families fled to Texas—and were branded as “cowards” by Lorenzo Zambrano, the boss of Cemex, a cement-maker which is one of Monterrey’s (and Mexico’s) biggest firms.

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Mexico’s Energy Reform Drawing Interest in Texas

energy - oil_rigThe Texas Tribune, 3/6/2013

The Mexican ruling party’s recent decision to adopt a platform that could open up the country’s giant oil monopoly to private investment has caught the attention of some industry gurus in Texas, who say the move bodes well for U.S. business interests.

The Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI, remains adamant that the state-owned company, Petróleos Mexicanos, or PEMEX, will stay under state control. But the proposal, which requires legislative approval, could mean more oil is exported from Mexico to the U.S., and that Mexico might turn to Americans for guidance on how to increase production there.

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