Finally the Next Start-Ups Buenos Aires this Wednesday

This Wednesday from 7:30 pm – 10:30 pm I’ll be hosting the Start-Ups Buenos Aires after office for the first time in over a year. Sorry everybody for taking such a long break so be sure to make it to the event because you never know when I’m going to host the next one. Carnal is also going to provide us with a few liters of beer which I plan to give to the first arrivals for free.

The point of the event is to meet people and make connections. If you’re looking for a job, to hire someone, find a business partner or just make some new friends this is the place to be. As always the event is free and this time there is a happy hour until midnight. Carnal also serves food in case you want to stay around for dinner or order something to snack on.

Here are the details for the event

Wednesday, April 13th, 2011
7:30pm – 10:30pm
Carnal (Palermo)
Niceto Vega 5511 (corner Humboldt)

You can see who is attending and more details on the Facebook event and don’t forget to join our Facebook group to receive announcements on future events.

Hope to see you there!

Best Job Websites for Hiring Talent in Buenos Aires

One of the hardest tasks I encountered when I started EasyBroker was finding and hiring talent in Buenos Aires. If I were to hire someone back home in the States I would have gone through my network of colleagues and friends and ask for recommendations. When you move to a new country you lose most of your work and school related connections and creating a building a new network can take quite some time. So without a network to fall back on I ended up posting our job openings to every job based website I came across. These are the websites that I found most useful for recruiting and finding talent in Buenos Aires.

Craigslist is the first place I went to and it’s a great source for looking for expat talent but very few Argentineans use it. I did get lucky and find an excellent Argentinean software engineer but overall it generated very few referrals for local tech and design talent. I also hired a few executive assistants from this site, all expats, but overall if you’re looking for local talent and in particular software developers or designers, you’ll probably have better luck with one of the sites below.

ZonaJobs is my top choice for looking for local tech talent, from designers to engineers. The site by far generated the most amount of candidates and I recall hiring at least one software developer from here. It’s also free but only in Spanish which is also true for all the websites except for Craigslist. If you don’t speak Spanish, find a bi-lingual assistant with Craigslist and then continue your search.

I also used CompuTrabajo and UniversoBit which generated quite a few candidates and I hired a designer from a response from CompuTrabajo. I can’t say whether one is better than the other but they’re both free and worth the time to post your job openings to.

All my recent hires have been through connections so I haven’t used any of the sites in a while and I imagine there are some other great options available now. One that I would definitely try out now is OLX. They have a lot of traffic and definitely generate a lot of real estate leads for our clients so I imagine they could do the same for job candidates.

If you’re looking to hire and have the time you should use all the sites. They’re all free and have worked for me in the past. I left out 15 or so other sites that we tried that turned out to be mostly a waste of time. If you think I’ve missed a good job website for Buenos Aires, please let me know by leaving a comment.

Best of luck hiring!

Quick Update

I received an email stating that I should include Bumeran.com. I didn’t because the site didn’t work well for us. We paid to place our job posts and see the CVs of candidates in their database but I found that the other sites worked better and didn’t charge anything or nag me with sales calls and emails after terminating the service. I’m not sure if they still charge or not but at the time it didn’t work for us.

Start-Ups Buenos Aires After Office this Wednesday

This Wednesday from 7:30 pm – 10:30 pm I’m hosting another Start-Ups Buenos Aires after office. This time I decided to host it at California Burrito Company (CBC) since it is a successful startup meaning it’s not so much of a startup anymore.

CBC opened their first store in 2006 and has grown into a successful business with six stores and a seventh soon to open in Santiago, Chile. Co-owner Jordan Metzner will be joining us and is also offering $10 margaritas and coronas during the after office.

The event is free and open to all that like to network and mingle with interesting people.

Here are the details for the event

Wednesday, February 24, 2010
7:30pm – 10:30pm
California Burrito Company (Palermo)
Godoy Cruz 1781 (corner Honduras)

You can see who is attending and more details on the facebook event and you can become a fan of CBC on their fan page.

Hope to see you there!

How I Ended Up Settling in Buenos Aires

Full stop in Buenos Aires“So how did you end up moving to Buenos Aires?” asks the inquisitive local or traveler passing through. It’s a question that expats are assuredly asked way too often regardless of where there new adopted home is. I’ve been asked so many times that I entertain myself by trying to invent the most unbelievable stories, from entering the drug trade to arms trafficking to even exporting babies. It’s surprising what you can get people to believe if you remain serious and have a good back story.

So I guess it’s time I fess up and give the actual reasons for my move to this country, and more over this city, that I love to love and hate at the same time. So back to the beginning.

I came to Buenos Aires for the first time in January 2005. I wanted to learn Spanish and I assumed that Spain would be a great place to get started but my friend Tom wisely suggested that I go to Buenos Aires to get a taste of Latin America and Europe in one shot. I did a little research and a few months later arrived for the first of what would be several trips to Buenos Aires.

After Buenos Aires, I continued to travel for two years to see the world and to find a place to live and ultimately start a business. I narrowed my options down based on what I could afford and where I would enjoy living to three regions of the world: Latin America, Eastern Europe, and South East Asia. I realized quickly that Eastern Europe would be too cold for my tastes and there was also the language barrier. In South East Asia I thought that the Philippines would be a great option after ruling out Thailand and Vietnam. The Philippines has nice beaches, great food, is very cheap, English is spoken almost everywhere and there is lot of tech talent.

ManilaIn South America I narrowed my choices to Panamá, Colombia, and Argentina. Panamá and Colombia were both close to the States and very easy to get to from Florida. Panamá, while offering great beaches and tropical weather, lacked a strong cultural or cosmopolitan environment by comparison to the other candidates. Colombia has the most amazing people and is one of my personal favorites but I thought the IT infrastructure was far behind Buenos Aires and I worried about the availability of tech talent; at least in Medellín which was my top choice for cities in Colombia at the time. Buenos Aires offered a cosmopolitan city, low labor costs, and a very lively real estate market which would complement my business well.

I convinced myself that the Philippines made the most business sense so I purchased tickets to Manila. My life could have been very different right now but I just couldn’t let go of the idea of living in Buenos Aires. I already had been there three times, I spoke the language well, and I even knew what neighborhood I wanted to live in almost down to the block. Buenos Aires also has a relatively large middle class whereas in Manila poverty was much more prevalent and the disparity between the rich and poor is much greater.

Ultimately I decided to give Buenos Aires one more month. I flew to Buenos Aires in January 2007 to make the final decision and the rest, as they say, is history.

After Office for Ruby on Rails Fans and Like Minded Geeks

I finally got around to organizing another after office for Tango Rails. If you’re in Buenos Aires and want to chat about Ruby on Rails or other cool technologies, join us at 7:30 pm on Wednesday February 17th at Sullivan’s on the corner of Borges and El Salvador in Palermo. It will be mixed crowd of Spanish and English speaking geeks.

For more information check out the Facebook event or join our Tango Rails Facebook Group.