Teresa has spent 15 years forging a career in the maritime and port sector, both in the private and public organizations. This corporate lawyer might not have made the leap to strategic consulting if she had not been lucky enough to be accompanied by some very special business partners along the way, who helped imbue her with the necessary entrepreneurial spirit.

She spent much of her childhood in Argentina and Portugal, where her father worked as a general manager for a hotel chain. She began her studies at the Lycée Français, first in Portugal, later in Spain and finally in the United States. After studying law at Complutense University in Madrid, she did an internship at the European Commission in Brussels where she received “strategic insights into Europe, in what was probably the most significant turning point in my professional life.” Coming from a long line of diplomats and being married to a Cuban has further enriched her cultural understanding.

When she talks about strategic consulting her words fly at a prodigious speed, making it hard to believe that she’s capable of wrapping up a rigorous argument in a nutshell. But she does, and there are no wasted words or slips. As a matter of fact, she is something of an alchemist with words, legal concepts, and strategic procedures. She speaks of her partners with admiration: “Rodrigo focuses on the macro; he’s the mentor anyone would want to have. Camilla is the creative one, and I’m the one who looks at the details, the one who exhaustively monitors processes. We’ve known each other for years, and our rapport is perfect. Driven by a mix of creativity and excellence, we don’t miss a beat in providing quality service to our clients.”

She talks excitedly about Borametz, its business model, and about how everything is perfectly planned and timed. “We all bring contacts and associates to the mix, making the available pool larger. At times like these it’s essential to have a network of trusted global partners to provide local support and specialized services, and due to those synergies we are able to contribute precisely that.”

“My goal today is to enable Spanish-based clients to expand their business opportunities in and beyond their niche markets, to develop a portfolio of inspiring services and products. Traditionally, Spaniards have not packaged our products well. We have magnificent cosmetics, premium foods, and transport and communication technologies. Did you know that 70% of olive oil imported by the USA comes from Italy even though it’s made from Spanish olives? That’s not right. There’s also a lot of work to be done to make industrial processes more efficient. There have been few truly comprehensive Spanish brands, since the interests of so many autonomous regions have served to dilute brand value rather than strengthen it. As a result, there are many fine small and medium size companies which are totally unknown outside their immediate market area. There’s much to be done,” she concludes in a decisive tone.

She is a traveler who loves contrasts: Morocco and Brazil, India and Turkey, a list that covers the entire world, including Cuba, her second homeland. She has not lost an ounce of humility or intellectual rigor since she began to speak. She loves to talk about her colleagues, about how well they work together, about the hard-earned wisdom they have gained over the years. “I love to travel, but the place that draws me most powerfully is the one where I get to spend quality time with my husband and daughters.” As we said: she is a woman of contrasts. You could talk to her for hours, but there’s just not enough time...

My goal today is to enable Spanish-based clients to expand their business opportunities in and beyond their niche markets, to develop a portfolio of inspiring services and products.
Q

What does it mean to be a Spanish company in a world where everything has been explored?

A

Many Spanish companies interpret, incorrectly, that knowledge and language are the same thing. Take Latin America, for example: there are 400 million people in the region that speak Spanish, but their business culture and market structure are as different from ours as from those in Burma or Kazakhstan. Only a handful of Spanish companies have made a successful transition to the international marketplace. Now that the world is fully globalized, it’s all about exploiting opportunities, and companies need to thoroughly explore a new market before they jump in. Another problem I perceive is that many Spanish companies still see expanding abroad as a short-term expense rather than as a long-term investment. To rectify this would be to change the way they see the marketplace. Companies need knowledge, high productivity, and a certain degree of financial strength to tackle most foreign markets.