Target an Audience of 650 Million with Spanish and Portuguese Translations

As the competition in the global marketplace heats up, companies without a strategy for connecting with customers worldwide face a strong possibility of getting left behind. Savvy companies and organizations stand to capture upwards of a combined 650 million potential customers by incorporating Spanish and Portuguese translation into their business strategy. As the influence and economic power of emerging Spanish and Portuguese-speaking markets continues to grow, companies that invest in high-quality translations to target this audience will see dividends.

Spanish is the most widely spoken of the Romance languages, both in terms of the number of speakers and the number of countries in which it is the dominant language. With approximately 400 million native speakers worldwide, Spanish is currently the second most widely spoken language overall. At present, Portuguese ranks sixth among the world’s major languages, with some 250 million native speakers around the world. Portuguese and Spanish are both recognized by UNESCO as the fastest growing of the European languages.

Why Spanish Translation?

The expanding presence of the Spanish language coupled with increased Latino buying power has cemented the Hispanic demographic’s influence in the United States. U.S. Latinos‘ buying power is expected to reach $1 trillion this year. Given the Hispanic market’s incredible growth, size, and increasing purchasing power, businesses and organizations cannot afford to overlook this segment of the population.

As the emerging markets of Latin America, particularly Chile, Mexico, Colombia and Peru, gain a stronger foothold, they become increasingly attractive sources of new clientele for those businesses looking to target new audiences. A well-crafted, Spanish translation done by a professional translator will help corporations and organizations communicate with the Hispanic community, both at home and abroad, to take advantage of the business opportunities provided by these rapidly expanding markets.

Why Portuguese Translation?

Over the last twenty years, Brazil has steadily grown to become Latin America’s largest economy. With a robust economic outlook and a population of about 190 million people, companies can no longer ignore Brazil. Given the country’s strong, stable currency and a growing middle class with a hunger for imported goods, reaching the Brazilian market appears to be more crucial than ever before for businesses. Although Brazil is the sole Portuguese-speaking country in the Americas, approximately one-half of South America’s inhabitants speak the language. In today’s global economy, it pays to be able to communicate effectively with the Portuguese-speaking population.

Brazil also expects a significant tourism boost over the next few years as the country plays host to two major international sporting events: the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympic Games. Translation from Portuguese to a host of other languages will be necessary to accommodate the scores of foreign athletes, tourists and journalists who will descend upon Brazil for these events.

Translate for the Spanish and Portuguese markets to extend your business’ or organization’s reach, and connect with everyone from the customers right in your backyard to those in the far-flung corners of Latin America.

Are you looking for a Portuguese Translator? Visit TransPortuguese.
Are you looking for a Spanish Translator? Visit Transpanish.

Portuñol: A Blend of Spanish and Portuguese

Portuñol or portunhol – a dialect based on code-switching between Spanish and Portuguese – has resulted from prolonged contact between the inhabitants of border areas. Emerging over time as a sort of lingua franca for those living in immigrant communities or in trade zones where speakers lacked fluency in the other group’s language, portuñol can be described as a hybrid mixture of Spanish and Portuguese with a smattering of influences from indigenous languages. Portuñol speakers are concentrated in the border areas between Argentina and Brazil, Paraguay and Brazil, and Uruguay and Brazil.

The most uniform and structured variation of portuñol, known as portuñol riverense or fronterizo, is spoken near the Uruguay-Brazil border, specifically in and around the area surrounding the twin cities of Rivera, Uruguay and Santana do Livramento, Brazil. Although most linguists consider portuñol riverense to be primarily a Portuguese-based dialect, other variants of portuñol retain more of a Spanish flavor.

In the past few years, a number of literary works in portuñol have been produced, largely by Uruguayan and Brazilian authors. One of the most celebrated examples of portuñol literature is a novel entitled Mar Paraguayo by Wilson Bueno. The use of portuñol has also risen on the Internet, with websites, blogs and chat rooms dedicated to the dialect.

The Spanish Language in Brazil

The popularity of Spanish as a foreign language continues to grow in Brazil, the only Portuguese-speaking nation on a continent dominated by Spanish. Brazil shares a border with seven Spanish-speaking countries, and it conducts a substantial amount of trade with countries where Spanish is spoken (1/4 of exports and 1/5 of imports).

A significant number of non-Brazilian Spanish speakers, estimated at about 1 million people, call the nation home, mostly as the result of immigration from surrounding countries. Sephardic Jews – who speak both Ladino and Spanish – settled in Brazil and now compose a small portion of the country’s Spanish-speaking peoples.

With an eye toward more fully integrating Brazil with its Spanish-speaking neighbors and partners in the South American trade bloc Mercosur, the Brazilian Congress passed an education bill in 2005 requiring all secondary schools to offer Spanish as a second language. This legislation spurred an increase in resources dedicated to Spanish, and the number of Brazilian students studying español has increased from one million to five million in a period of just five years. A recent agreement between Spain’s Cervantes Institute, an organization devoted to promoting the Spanish language worldwide, and the Brazilian Ministry of Education provides for the training of 26,000 Spanish teachers to manage the increased demand sparked by the 2005 bill.

Origin of the word Brazil

The name Brazil is derived from the Portuguese word paubrasil, the name of an East Indian tree with reddish-brown wood from which a red dye was extracted. The Portuguese found a New World tree related to the Old World brasil tree when they explored what is now called Brazil, and as a result they named the New World country after the Old World tree. The word brasil is cognate with French brésil, Old French berzi and bresil, Old Italian verzino, and Medieval Latin brezellum, brasilium, bresillum, braxile. The many Latin forms suggest a non-Latin, non-Romance origin, as in an East Indian term.

Brasil tree


Why consider Portuguese Translation?

With growing opportunities for foreign trade and investment in Brazil, the demand for Portuguese translation, particularly in the industrial/commercial sector, has increased markedly over the last several years. A robust economy and favorable business climate combined with the country’s burgeoning middle class present an interesting opportunity for corporations looking to expand their operations into South America. Although Brazil is the sole Portuguese-speaking country in the Americas, approximately one-half of South America’s inhabitants speak the language. The key to accessing Brazil’s population of roughly 190 million will be through translation to and from Portuguese.

As the citizens of Portuguese-speaking countries become increasingly connected to the Internet, companies must begin to consider the importance of having a Portuguese presence on the web. For example, Internet access is growing at breakneck speed in Brazil, even among the poor. Companies looking to break into or strengthen their position with the Portuguese-speaking market would be wise to cultivate an Internet presence em português.

As the site of the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympic Games, Brazil will experience a massive tourism boost over the next few years. Although English and French are the official languages of the Olympics, translation from Portuguese to a host of other languages will be necessary to accommodate the scores of foreign athletes, tourists and journalists who will travel to Brazil for these events.

While Brazil is eager to attract visitors from abroad, the nation’s growing middle and upper classes enjoy traveling as well. According to, with Brazil’s “economic growth prompting more middle-class travelers, growth [in travel to the U.S.] seems likely to continue for many years.” In addition, “Brazilian travelers are among the biggest spenders when traveling to the U.S., averaging $3,557 per traveler.” Business owners looking to attract Brazilian visitors should consider translating marketing materials into Portuguese.

It is also worth noting that UNESCO has recognized Portuguese as one of the fastest growing European languages. Additionally, the language’s expanding influence in South America and southern Africa mean that Portuguese demonstrates significant potential as a language of international communication. The language is also experiencing a resurgence in popularity in certain parts of Asia including East Timor and Macau. Businesses looking to capitalize on opportunities in these emerging markets are wise to consider Portuguese translation.

More information on the Brazilian Economy and Portuguese Language.

Are you looking for a Portuguese Translator? Visit TransPortuguese.