GBTA Forecasts A Return To Double Digit Growth For Brazil's Business Travel Spend In 2013

- Brazil currently ranks 8th in the business travel global index -

Mar 13, 2013, 06:00 ET from Global Business Travel Association

SAO PAULO, March 13, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The Global Business Travel Association ("GBTA"), the world's premier business travel and corporate meetings organization, has released its latest GBTA BTI™ Outlook report on Brazil as part of its semiannual series. The report, sponsored by Visa, includes the GBTA BTI™, an index of business travel spending which provides a way to distill market performance over a period of time.

Key Highlights

  • GBTA BTI™ indicates that strengthening domestic and global economies will place Brazil on a strong growth path in 2013, with the index increasing by over 40 points
  • Brazilian total business travel spending is expected to grow 14.3% in 2013 to $34.5 billion
  • Domestic business travel spending has grown 8.3% a year over the last 12 years, and is forecast to grow 12.9% to $27 billion in 2013
  • International outbound travel spending is on target to expand by 20.2% in 2013, reaching $7.1 billion
  • Demand for hotel rooms and air travel has been strengthening from both domestic and international outbound travelers; however there is an increasingly large gap in supply
  • Brazil currently ranks 8th in the business travel global rankings, and is on track to surpass Italy, France and the UK over the next two years

Wellington Costa, President of GBTA Brazil commented: "Brazil has shown remarkable economic resilience and we see this reflected in the latest GBTA business travel data. Although business travel spending slowed toward the end of 2012, growth rates for both  travel spend and the economy are now rising again. The major challenge facing the Brazilian business travel market is whether the country's travel infrastructure and supply can keep pace with its growing demand." 

"Brazil continues to be a bright spot globally when it comes to travel, with both domestic and international travel spending continuing to see strong growth," said Diego Rodriguez, Head of Commercial Solutions, Visa Inc. Latin America and Caribbean. "According to the findings, Brazilian business travelers will surpass Italy, France and the UK over the next two years, as it continues rapid economic growth and development. With events such as the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the Rio 2016 Olympic Games helping fuel both business and tourism travel, Visa is committed to helping Brazil maximize their economic potential with electronic payment infrastructure."

While it appears that the current economy is weighing on the minds of travelers, for the first half of this year, we saw U.S. and international travelers increasing their spend on Visa accounts," said Tad Fordyce, head of global commercial solutions at Visa Inc. "From January to June of 2012, international travelers increased travel spend on their Visa accounts by nine percent in the U.S. to $20.1 billion. U.S. travelers were also active for the first six months, increasing travel spend on their Visa accounts by seven percent to $17 billion. 2012 has the ability to be the year of the traveler if we can continue this momentum of business and leisure travel."

The path to growth

Despite the recessionary years of 2008 and 2009, Brazil's business travel spending has continued to grow at an impressive rate, and has nearly tripled since 2000. From an estimated $11 billion in 2000 travel spend expanded at an average rate of 8% per year to over $30 billion in 2012.

In 2013 growth rates are expected to return to double digit figures, boosted by upward trends in key economic indicators – particularly business confidence and employment – both highly correlated with business travel spend. Business travel spending is forecast to increase by 14.3% to $34.5 billion in 2013.  This growth momentum will continue, with total business travel spending forecast to grow another 16.1% to $40 billion in 2014. 

Moving up the world rankings

Brazil's business travel industry has been performing strongly compared to other developed markets. Brazil is currently ranked 8th in the world, up one place from 2011. With current growth rates, Brazil is forecast to continue its rise through the rankings as a major business travel market, overtaking Italy, France and the UK over the next two years.  

Challenges ahead

The forecast for Brazil is positive; however there are challenges which must be addressed if the business travel market is to reach its full potential. The demand for hotel rooms and air travel has been strengthening from both domestic and international inbound travelers, and is set to increase over the next few years in the run-up to the World Cup and Olympics. The key challenge will be whether this demand can be met going forward. Currently the supply of hotel rooms and air travel remains constrained, and the manner in which this is addressed will impact the continued growth of the business travel market in Brazil.

About the GBTA BTI™ Outlook – Brazil

The GBTA Foundation, the education and research arm of the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA), commissioned Rockport Analytics, LLC to build the first-ever semiannual business travel outlook for Brazil.  Sponsored by Visa, the purpose is to provide corporate travel professionals and the broader business community insight into both short- and long-term trends in domestic and international outbound business travel activity.

The GBTA BTI™ Outlook – Brazil projects aggregate business travel trends over the next eight quarters. The report tracks business travel spending in total and by domestic and outbound segments.  It relates unfolding economic events at home and abroad to their resulting impacts on the Brazilian business travel market.  GBTA BTI™ Outlook – Brazil 2013H1 is the third report in the semiannual series.  In 2013, releases are expected to be published in March and September. 

Rockport Analytics developed an econometric model to better inform the forecast process.  The model explicitly relates measures of business travel spending, uniquely sourced from other GBTA Foundation research , to key economic and market drivers of Brazilian business travel including:

  • Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and its components
  • Employment & Unemployment
  • Measures of Business & Consumer Confidence
  • International Trade, Foreign Direct Investment, and Exchange Rates
  • Commodity Prices
  • Oil Prices
  • Inflation Measures
  • Productivity Rates for Business Travel
  • International Air Transport Association (IATA) Passenger and Revenue Performance
  • Smith Travel Research (STR) Global Hotel Performance  

The report is available free of charge to GBTA members by (INSERT URL) and non-members may purchase the report through the GBTA Foundation by emailing (CONFIRM EMAIL).

About the GBTA Foundation

The GBTA Foundation is the education and research foundation of the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA), the world's premier business travel and corporate meetings organization.  Collectively, GBTA's 5,000-plus members manage over $340 billion of global business travel and meetings expenditures annually. GBTA provides its network of 21,000 business and government travel and meetings managers, as well as travel service providers, with networking events, news, education & professional development, research, and advocacy. The foundation was established in 1997 to support GBTA's members and the industry as a whole. As the leading education and research foundation in the business travel industry, the GBTA Foundation seeks to fund initiatives to advance the business travel profession. The GBTA Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. For more information, see and

SOURCE Global Business Travel Association