Special Section: Brazil – Miami Link

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Italians out as Brazil calls off supervision tender for US$16bn bullet train

By Daniel Bland

stock-vector-world-flags-south-america-vector-97227350An Italian consortium is temporarily out of the race as Brazil’s national logistics and planning group, EPL, has repealed the tender process for the supervision of the executive project for the country’s 35.6bn-real (US$15.6bn) Rio-Sao Paulo-Campinas bullet train project.

The consortium – composed of Geodata do Brasil, Geodata Engineering  and Italferr – was the frontrunner to win. All other competitors were disqualified.

According to tender rules, the hired supervisor must have access to the executive project detailing the methodology used to operate and implement the high speed train. However, as the tender to hire the train operator was delayed for one year in early August, EPL’s tender committee has decided to revoke the supervisory tender until an operator is established.

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Skepticism over Brazil’s US$15bn bullet train project mounts, plan B underway

By Daniel Bland

stock-vector-world-flags-south-america-vector-97227350Hit with a one-year suspension on August 12 due to a lack of interested bidders, some believe that the tender for Brazil’s acclaimed 35.6bn-real (US$14.8bn) Rio-Sao Paulo-Campinas bullet train project will not even be launched by year-end 2014.

Although transportation minister César Borges announced on Friday (Aug 16) that the federal government has earmarked 267mn reais to develop “final” plans for the bullet train project in 2014, technical experts within the government are considering a medium-speed alternative to replace it, local news service O Globo reported.

Such a project would cost about half as much, considering some of the medium-speed train projects under development.

According to attorney Rodrigo Matheus, who specializes in public services and bidding processes, an alternative should be considered given the recent protests questioning the quality of public services and urban mobility.

Moreover, “it is unlikely that the initiative will be re-started during the current government administration [which ends December 2014] so the entire project would be put into the hands of the succeeding administration,” Matheus was quoted as saying in the report.

The risk of moving forward with the project is huge, adds Henry Motta Pinto, an expert in regulatory law at the Sampaio Ferraz law firm.

To get an idea of pricing, São Paulo state is preparing to kick off an 18.5bn-real public-private partnership tender by November which involves a 35-year concession to build and operate an intercity passenger railway network of some 431km. Per kilometer, it costs 61.4% of the 511km bullet train project.

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Gartner: Espionage scandal may undermine companies’ cloud adoption

By Pedro Ozores

The recent espionage alleged to have been carried out by the US National Security Agency (NSA) could undermine companies’ movement to the cloud and other critical infrastructure outsourcing initiatives, believes Gartner’s VP of research, Gene Phifer.

Copy of miami globe wAccording to Phifer, traditionally conservative companies that are worried about security and privacy issues may now feel even more concerned.

The effect would be more significant in regions like Latin America, where corporates are still refraining from moving their infrastructure to the cloud due to data sovereignty aspects.

“Concerns with loss of intellectual property or significant privacy issues are present and things like the revelations about the NSA in the US and abroad make people concerned, particularly abroad.”

“With bloops like this, we may have even further issues before moving forward with cloud computing,” Phifer told journalists during Gartner’s Application Architecture, Development & Integration Summit in São Paulo.

Referring to Brazil specifically, the analyst pointed out: “A lot of Brazilian companies are a little conservative and I think those folks are a bit slower in embracing the cloud because of concerns with privacy and security. But we are seeing certain important movements. From a SaaS perspective, there is CRM for example. We are seeing some infrastructure services from Amazon and a bit of collaboration with Microsoft 365 or Google’s Apps and Docs, among other things,” stated the analyst.

According to another Gartner analyst, Ian Finley, customer-facing apps, software-as-a-service (SaaS) and mobile applications tend to grow among companies in the applications space, as “there isn’t a pre-existing bias within the organizations regarding them and it is much harder to take an existing system, like core banking, and move it to the cloud.”

Gartner’s analysts stress that the types of cloud being adopted have no common pattern, varying according to the core activity of the company and segment by segment.

Analyst David Michael Smith notes that finance companies, which are more security-conscious, are more likely to adopt private clouds, while others, like educational and less-regulated environments prefer the public cloud services.

“Besides, some regions and companies are more concerned about privacy than others. There is also concern with the jurisdiction of data, especially among large multinationals.”

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Brazilian-based PagSeguro launches a credit card payment solution for mobile phones and tablets

PAGSEGURO CARD READER

PagSeguro, Brazil’s market leader in online payment solutions, has released a m-payment product that enables shoppers and professionals to process credit card transactions using mobile phones and tablets.

The PagSeguro mobile solution enables transactions with a card reader that plugs into a mobile phone or tablet’s audio jack. It is the first large-scale mobile payments initiative in Brazil. “PagSeguro has taken a major step forward in mobile solutions,” said PagSeguro Director, Ricardo Dortas.

“It allows independent professionals, service providers and small merchants to accept credit cards in an easy way and with no monthly charges or subscription costs.  The solution also allows customers to pay in 12 installments and the seller will receive in one lump sum,” he said. Splitting up credit card purchases into several installments is a common practice among Brazilian consumers.

PagSeguro has more than 23 million buyers on the Web, and 300,000-plus merchants. It is part of UOL, Brazil’s largest Internet company content and services provider, which covers 70% of Brazil’s Internet users every month and reaches more than 6.7 billion monthly page-views.

It allows independent professionals, service providers and small merchants to accept credit cards in an easy way and with no monthly charges or subscription costs.  The solution also allows customers to pay in 12 installments and the seller will receive in one lump sum,” — Ricardo Dortas

To use the service, the seller must request the reader in PagSeguro website (https://pagseguro.uol.com.br/) and download the free PagSeguro application from the app store.  The technology is available for both iOS and Android devices.

Once the card reader is received, the seller plugs the card reader into the audio jack of his mobile phone or tablet, enters the transaction amount and swipes the client’s card.

PagSeguro’s new m-payment solution allows professionals such as taxi drivers, beauty consultants, personal trainers and dentists to increase revenue by accepting credit cards anywhere at any time, using only their cell phone or tablet.

About PagSeguro

PagSeguro, a UOL company, is an online payments solution that enables anyone to complete transactions or receive payments using credit cards, bank transfers, payment slips or their PagSeguro account balance. UOL is the leading internet services and online content company in Brazil. It provides an extremely safe environment for online transactions. The company also reduces the barriers for online purchases by automating online buying and selling processes, and allows businesses of any sizes to increase their online transactions.

About UOL

UOL is the leading internet services and online content company in Brazil. It reaches more than 6.7 billion monthly page-views, according to Omniture. Its home page receives more than 50 million unique visitors per month. It is a pioneer in the Brazilian Internet industry, offering the widest Portuguese online content and has more than 1,000 news, information, entertainment and service channels. It has the largest online platform of products and services in advertising, mobile services, electronic online payment (PagSeguro), e-commerce (Shopping UOL, TodaOferta), hosting and security services (UOL Host and UOLDIVEO).

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Brazilian government to launch federal cloud system in September

By Pedro Ozores

The Brazilian government, through the data processing service Serpro, will launch a federal cloud computing system in September to provide services to municipalities and other public entities, federal news agency Agência Brasil reported.

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Brasilia

The information was revealed by Serpro president Marcos Mazoni during an international conference on open source software and e-government, held in capital Brasília.

Initially aimed at hosting the systems that will provide services under the Cidades Digitais (digital cities) program, the project is likely to be expanded to other areas of public services as well.

The technology offered will include basic health management (integrated with the state health system SUS cards), school management and communication suite systems for some 200 municipalities, according to Mazoni.

DATA SOVEREIGNTY

The Brazilian cloud is robust and that the national servers are ready to accommodate three times the level of expected demand, the Serpro president said.

He also considers that the measure “reinforces national sovereignty” and increases data security at a time in which the government is looking to adopt tougher measures to protect Brazilians’ data following the NSA espionage reports. 

“The Brazilian government needs to work with auditable software that is, most importantly, not committed to other countries. We want to strengthen national sovereignty. The cloud will increase safety with codes, which will be open and auditable,” Manzoni said.

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miamiemp digital w2Miami Empresarial Magazine: Around the Corner. Around the World – Are you a South Florida Mover & Shaker? A Global Entrepreneur opening a new business in Miami? An established company that requires hemispheric business development? Then, don’t be left out of one of the fastest growing business publications in South Florida and beyond.You can now reach thousands of decision making professionals 24/7. We go the extra mile to bring you original content, in-depth interviews, unique photos and pertinent news no other media can afford to cover. If you are interested in bringing your company to the next level, you must include Miami Empresarial Magazine in print and digital editions in your advertising and sponsorship budget. Contact us today for a private presentation to show you our traffic and circulation statistics and help you get your business in the spotlight. . . arquimedes@miamiempresarial.net or 305-281-9700

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