Thoughts from the S. Hemisphere

I have been in Quito, Ecuador for the last week meeting with one of our original editors (he’s an American living down here) and also trying to meet the newspaper management at several of the big dailies. Quito has more than 2 million residents and a bustling business community. This country makes a lot of sense for our first international expansion because the economy is growing very quickly here — I don´t have figures in front of me but there are kids everywhere. I have a hunch they may benefit from all we´ve learned in Richmond on both the advertising, data gathering and news operation.

Quito also does some things that would greatly benefit Richmond. One simple improvement would be dedicated bike lanes. They would cost almost nothing to put in and could make the downtown area much more bike friendly, which could cut down on traffic and make the city more green.

Some other thoughts so far: Parks down here are a key to the way people live. And you see something that you would never seen in Richmond: families and kids playing in the parks after dark. Not organized sports, but just monkeying around.

I´ve also been thinking often of our libertarian readers. Quito bustles with commerce in a way I imagine Richmond probably did at the turn of the century. Everything is for sale at all times. When you take a bus, 20 people come on selling ice cream, or snake oil, or potato chips. There are shoeshine stands, and taxis honking at you to see if you need a lift. It´s all very exciting, a reminder that business doesn’t just get done in big office buildings.

Also interesting, the country uses the US Dollar, which means they cannot print money like we can. That means their Federal Reserve cannot pump money into the economy or help banks if they need funds. They switched over from the Sucre around ten years ago to help combat hyper inflation. I’ve been told it´s helped the country immensely.

I have been in Quito, Ecuador for the last week meeting with one of our original editors (he’s an American living down here) and also trying to meet the newspaper management at several of the big dailies. Quito has more than 2 million residents and a bustling business community. This country makes a lot of sense for our first international expansion because the economy is growing very quickly here — I don´t have figures in front of me but there are kids everywhere. I have a hunch they may benefit from all we´ve learned in Richmond on both the advertising, data gathering and news operation.

Quito also does some things that would greatly benefit Richmond. One simple improvement would be dedicated bike lanes. They would cost almost nothing to put in and could make the downtown area much more bike friendly, which could cut down on traffic and make the city more green.

Some other thoughts so far: Parks down here are a key to the way people live. And you see something that you would never seen in Richmond: families and kids playing in the parks after dark. Not organized sports, but just monkeying around.

I´ve also been thinking often of our libertarian readers. Quito bustles with commerce in a way I imagine Richmond probably did at the turn of the century. Everything is for sale at all times. When you take a bus, 20 people come on selling ice cream, or snake oil, or potato chips. There are shoeshine stands, and taxis honking at you to see if you need a lift. It´s all very exciting, a reminder that business doesn’t just get done in big office buildings.

Also interesting, the country uses the US Dollar, which means they cannot print money like we can. That means their Federal Reserve cannot pump money into the economy or help banks if they need funds. They switched over from the Sucre around ten years ago to help combat hyper inflation. I’ve been told it´s helped the country immensely.

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Matt
Matt
12 years ago

Ok, here is some issues First of all bike lanes are not free to put in and they are not that easy. Where would you put them? Sidewalks? – no where near enough room on the existing sidewalks. This is what they have in Germany and it works great, but they designed for this. Street? – This is what they do in DC. There is a space between the lane and parked cars. Sounds great, right? Wrong, people park or use the space to wait so there is almost always a car in the bike lane. So the cyclist has… Read more »