business opportunities

One of the most innovative cities in the world [you’ll never guess]

September 17, 2014
Talca, Chile

[Editor’s Note: This is the first in a multi-part series on some of the top Startup ecosystems in the world]

When Chris D. came up with a great idea for his startup he was already thinking outside the box.

But his innovation didn’t stop there. His thought process extended far beyond the business idea into WHERE to best execute his plan.

He was already established in[...] Click here to continue reading

Your questions and important updates

June 11, 2010
Santiago, Chile

As I mentioned in yesterday's subscribers-only letter, I've been to Chile numerous times, and I like it more each time I'm here. For this trip, which is unfortunately short, I wanted to survey the countryside to see the extent of the earthquake damage.

It's easy to have already forgotten February's 8.8 earthquake in Chile, roughly 500x stronger than Haiti's.  That's because there was scant media coverage, limited outpouring[...] Click here to continue reading

Two interesting opportunities in Panama

June 9, 2010
Panama City, Panama

Panamanians are generally a carefree lot... but there are a few things that they curiously take very, very seriously. Mother's Day is one example-- it's held in December, and the entire country shuts down for the day, including banks and government offices.

Voting is another example-- it's actually compulsory in Panama to go to the polls, and the government ensures that you don't have any excuses by[...] Click here to continue reading

Important information about capital controls

April 19, 2010
Quito, Ecuador

I don't have to tell you that world governments are collectively pushing hard against people who abusively hide money overseas.

Governments' primary motivation at the moment is to make sure that no one is evading their tax obligations; for now, they don't care much if you pay taxes on your income, and then transfer after-tax earnings overseas.

In a way, though, their offshore crackdowns have become a[...] Click here to continue reading

The genius in the jungle

April 7, 2010
Darien, Panama

My Panamanian boat captain looked at me like I was crazy.

"Amigo, you shouldn't jump in over here... the waves are very dangerous." I agreed. But we had been trolling for sailfish for a couple of hours with absolutely no success, and I really felt like livening up my day a bit.

At the time, our fishing boat was passing an area where particularly violent waves were[...] Click here to continue reading

Which countries will compete for you

March 24, 2010
Hong Kong, SAR

One of the worst things that can happen to a country is to experience a brain-drain.  The loss of productive people who create new technologies and companies means the loss of the jobs and wealth that they create.

The long-term aggregate effects of this can be truly devastating, and history provides no shortage of examples.

By nature, though, people are generally creatures of habit-- inert beings.[...] Click here to continue reading

Questions: RFID chips, moving retirement funds, offshore businesses, Panamanian citizenship

March 19, 2010
Pattaya, Thailand

My time here in Thailand is finally coming to an end, at least for now. On Monday morning, after I stop by the US embassy to pick up my renewed passport, I'll be headed to Hong Kong.

I should briefly mention something about passports. Starting in 2007, the US government began manufacturing all new passports with RFID chips-- small devices which record and transmit data.

Malaysia was[...] Click here to continue reading

Business opportunities in Panama

February 2, 2010

Panama City, Panama

I see a lot of opportunity in Panama right now for entrepreneurs and small businesses; in fact, I see more opportunity here than in just about every other country in the western hemisphere with few exceptions.


Panama has two strong emerging consumer markets.

The first is the obvious low hanging fruit: foreigners. Their ranks in Panama are growing by the day, swelling the[...] Click here to continue reading

Why you don’t want to go at it alone

Blair is in her early 40s from Southern California.  She's intelligent, fairly aggressive, and an experienced financial executive at a mid-sized manufacturing company. In total, she has about $250,000 in savings, some of which she used to buy property in Panama.

She is single with no children and has been traveling to Panama to plant flags since 2006. She plans on (semi) retiring there in another 5-years and has unfortunately learned a lot of[...] Click here to continue reading

Case Study: Multiple Flags in Venezuela

January 19, 2010
Mexico City (DF), Mexico

For such a pale skinned gringo, his Spanish was impeccable. We were both sitting in the business class lounge at the airport, and the fluidity with which he was prattling away in Spanish on his mobile phone caught my attention.

Ordinarily, given his very light complexion and European fashion sense, I would have guessed that he was Argentine; his accent, however, was devoid of the traditional[...] Click here to continue reading

How to make an extra $12,422,575.54

January 12, 2010
Estepona, Spain
There is really a great deal of information out there about offshore corporate structures... frankly it's mind numbing. Do a search for "offshore corporation" and you will undoubtedly return over a million websites promising you fast incorporation in Panama or the BVI, as well as a host of 'benefits' for that particular jurisdiction.

Are these benefits real? Does it make sense to structure a business overseas?

Yes. Planting[...] Click here to continue reading

How to avoid living in a police state

If I have been too subtle in the past, let me be absolutely clear this afternoon: the time to do something, the time to take action to safeguard your future and your families livelihood, is NOW.

I'm more impassioned than usual this morning... and with reason.  Reluctantly, I tuned in to Team Obama's press briefing last night about the ongoing saga of the Nigerian underwear bomber.  Obama's is clearly trying to cultivate a fear[...] Click here to continue reading

Subscriber Questions

I receive a lot of subscriber questions, and while I cannot answer them all, I wanted to specifically address three of them that key in on recurring themes in this community-- second citizenship, investing, international opportunities, corporate structures, banking, and gold/silver storage.

1) Paul asks-- "I was wondering what your 1st choice would be in setting up an online business offshore.  Which country would be best for business structure, hosting, and merchant accounts?"

[...] Click here to continue reading

The best places in the world to start a business

I hold it as a guiding principle that there is quite literally a world of opportunity out there... and this goes especially for business. Years ago, there were limited consumer markets available where entrepreneurs could sell their products and services. Today, the playing field has truly leveled.

Emerging Asian economies have a burgeoning middle class that numbers in excess of 1 billion people with discretionary spending power.  The Persian Gulf region is home to[...] Click here to continue reading

Five reasons you should consider China as a place to live and do business

I spend a great deal of my time on the road, traveling around the world in search of opportunity. I put boots on the ground while I'm on the hunt and end up screening a tremendous amount of both business and investment ideas.

Some of these ideas make the cut, and we take the concept further. Others don't.

Regardless, the time that I spend on the ground getting to know the cityscape and[...] Click here to continue reading

What China’s wealthy want…


I spent the better part of my day today at a small conference attended by many of Shanghai's wealthy, plus their lawyers and accountants.  Considering the subject material is highly frowned upon by the government, I was surprised that so many were in attendance.

So what was the topic of discussion at today's event? Second citizenship.  Specifically, the St. Kitts second citizenship program.

Throughout the afternoon, local Chinese listened intently as[...] Click here to continue reading

It’s all about who you know…

Apparently I've been traveling too much, because I was recently caught out of the loop.

On Wednesday I published an article about Panama's Resolution 52; the law effectively makes it illegal for landlords to rent property in Panama for less than 1-year.

I predicted in the letter that, based on the past track record of Panama's National Assembly, the law would be repealed shortly due to significant pressure from the real estate industry[...] Click here to continue reading

Confused about China?

"Dear Simon- Jeff Clark from Growth Stock Wire recently wrote that 'China is a fraud' and that 'If Americans aren’t buying big-screen TVs or $100 sneakers, Chinese stocks are ultimately headed for trouble.'  I would like your opinion on his view."
Great question. I like Jeff Clark and generally agree with his analysis... but like I said in Monday's essay, I am puzzled that a few notable figures in the financial community are bearish on[...] Click here to continue reading

Where to make a fortune in China

If you're an entrepreneur and want to make an absolute fortune, you need to head to Asia.

The last several weeks on the ground here have only reinforced my long-held premise that Asia's economies represent vast, wide open potential.  These economies are growing, and shall continue to grow thanks to solid macroeconomic fundamentals like a large pool of savings, lack of reliance on credit, and dual trade/budget surpluses.

Nowhere is this more clear[...] Click here to continue reading

Profit From Panama Canal Expansion

Earlier today, amid much pomp and fanfare, the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) opened the sealed bids for the canal expansion project. Audience members looked on eagerly like it was the Academy Award for best picture...  The lowest bidder? A consortium led by Italy's Impregilo, ringing in for a cool $3.12 billion.

Wait, wait, not so fast.  The contract has yet to be awarded and the ACP has a point system that factors both price[...] Click here to continue reading

Interesting opportunities in Panama

I'm back in Panama today... I've never been so happy to see Panamanian soil before; the trip to Cuba, which I reported on yesterday, was fantastic-- but the lack of reliable phone and internet connectivity was problematic now that I have a daily deadline to meet.

I spend a lot of time in Panama, and yet every time I fly in, I am continually amazed at how quickly it seems to be changing. I[...] Click here to continue reading