American Owned Businesses in Paraguay


Does anyone here have any info on wealthy business owners in the cattle, forestry or real estate businesses?

I'm dating a Paraguayan girl here in the US, that is telling me of all the money that's being made done there in forestry, cattle and real estate.

Are Americans targets for crime such as: burglaries, home invasions, extortion, kidnapping, etc... more so than wealthy Paraguayans?

I heard that since 2009 these crimes have been on the rise.

I have about $1 Mil to invest there, but I'm afraid of what I've read at the below links:


Can any Americans living there, please give me any insights as to what's really going on down there, please?

Your valuable insights would be most appreciated.

Thank you.

Got to watch them Paraguayan girls Rick, dating them can lead to all sort of complications, such as marriage, or at least it did in my case %^)!

As to crime in Paraguay, it has definitley gotten a lot more press in the last few years but I'm not sure if it's really due to crime being more prevalent or just better reported. Probably a little of both.

I've been going down to Paraguay for nearly 11 years now and can remember recieving the same dire warnings of rampart petty crime then as now (pickpockets, holdups, purse snatching type of things).  Never been or known first hand any victims though, and we and others we know still use public transport exensively around Asuncion and travel by bus between towns with no problem.  I normally feel safer here than in DC or any large US urban area, but it is the third world so you have to be prudent and keep a low profile to be safe.

As for the very violent or deadly crimes like home invasions, kidnappings, murders, etc you can see a lot more evidence of these type of crimes in the news than in the past.  And again, not sure if these are just better reported now or actually on the rise.  As for American expats being targets more than wealthy Paraguayans, I don't think that's the case since there are so few American expats down here.  Most expats, especially in the past few years, seem to be coming from Europe.  I've noted a rash of assaults, home invasions and murders being reported in the last year against some of these expats who live in more remote areas.  About four incidents as I recall over the last year or so. 

One thing I noted upon my first visit here is that even in Asuncion, the expensive homes and neighborhoods all have very evident security in place like gates, video cameras, razor wire at the top of walls and armed security guards.  So if Paraguayan's feel the need for this type of thing, there is obviously a reason for it.

As for investing in cattle/forestry/real estate, these are traditionally the the investment options for the wealthy here.  With low property taxes, little gov't regulation or prohibitions on foreigners owning property, it is fairly easy to purchase and invest in Paraguay.   In fact, if you want to believe the press, Goerge Bush has extensive "stealth" holdings in cattle and ranches in Paraguay (but of course they also report there are secret US military bases all over the Chaco too!).  From what I've seen, Brazilians are the big players in buying up property here traditionally.  It sort of reminds me like in the 80's in the US where the press was screaming about the Japanese  "buying up America".   

I'd be very careful before jumping in on any deals though, it's sort of a national past time here to take advantage of "outsiders".  And a lot of those trying to take advantage are themselves outsiders who have discovered that it may be a lucrative business to fleece the unwary "newbies".  I'd always recommend that you verify in person any property or deal though and not rely on intermediaries or the internet in lieu of personal hands on work.   And also be very careful regarding the legal end of things, the court system is fairly corrupt and will drive you crazy if you have to deal with it.  We've bought property here and while it's not as an investment per se, our dealings have made it apparent that there are great deals and opportunities here, you just have be careful and realize "you aint in Kansas anymore"......

Good luck!

majbjb, you've just said all and much more that I've just wanted to say.

But really Rick, are you trying to con someone or just plain crazy? Going here open on the i-net saying you have $1 million to invest...That's like the surest way to get just the kind of attention you're wanting to avoid, believe me.

If you speak Spanish, why don't you come down here yourself and look things out, no offence but I would recommend without girlfriend.Know of more story's than I care to remember that started something like that...

Of course problem is, getting that honest person here on the ground (always a problem in every country) but there is business's that like farm for you and so on.Only they'll take their more than fair cut, but you'll still make money I guess.

Paraguay dangerous... I've lived in worse and as long as you just don't flaunt your money power around, I won't expect anything else happening here to you than could happen to you on any other place on earth.

Keep low and make triple sure about anything.

Hey a Big Thanks  goes out to "Majbjb" and "Nic'oPY" for their posts.

I'm new to this site and haven't really got the hang of it yet.

First of all about the $1Mil... I don't have it in my jeans, but I can easily raise it.  I should have said I have access to the money, as a limited-investor, syndicator and adviser.  Not a prob.  I'm a well connected buisness man in the States.

My girl's telling me that cattle men are making serious money selling the livestock to the Brazilians.  One of her friends makes $1.2 Mil "per month" in this business.  Hectares of land go for $15.00 each. That's only $7.35 per acre!  There no taxes due on this income!  She said the initial investment could be earned back "muy rapido."  With those numbers if they're real ... which I consider insane... she's obviously right.

She also tells me that duplexes are being constructed for $80K land and bldg, and sold for $250K todias dias. Any feedback on this, as well?

My fears are that the insiders will be disgruntled with an outsider getting into their game.  You know... we'll break a ya knee caps, kind of stuff?  This number one.

Number two: About those crimes I mentioned.  A famous ex-model Paraguyan was abducted in posh area of Asuncion, and barely escaped with her life.  The barbed wire and guards I've heard about.

Believe me guys, I've heard about the all the extortions going on in Mexico, etc... of Americans for Cash.

If I go down there alone, I'll be in dirty rags, ride in a beater car, live in a crappy apartment and never show anyone any cash. I won't be in the discos flashing cash and parlaying the chicas either.  It'd be a three-to-five year stint in totally in coginto, in order to get this done.

But, I don't speak Spanish well enough to do this alone.  She's reluctantly willing to help. She's say's she'll go. If I give here a kid here first!  Right!?  If she goes, I've been invited to live with her and her family.  They have upscale digs in two cities, but I'm concerned about being down in these posh areas... afraid that I'd stick out like a sore thumb.

If I go alone, I'm afraid to be down there with no contacts. She'd introduce me to many people, but I still feel I need a native liason, and she's very well-connected down there.

I'd like her to run the biz and give her a few kids and I'll  come and go down there.  It would be perfect.  Unfortunately, she's not interested in making money, and wants me to give her a kid here in the US.  This I'm in no way into.

I prefer my kids to be born and raised in another country; anywhere but the US.  I know that she's fallen in love me and with the US and wants an "anchor baby" and a "green card", which she definitely deserves and can easily obtain. 

I believe she really loves me, and I'm not second-guessing her motivations, but nonetheless, the game has to be played my way, or no way.

Now she has this pipe dream that she can be a Hollywood movie star, but in my opinion she's no longer of the right age to break into the biz and I told her that.

I'm very skittish of being duped, not by her, but down there in Paraguay without an insider as a partner. Especially, without my Spanish being in perfectly fluent.  Maybe I'll move to a safer Spanish speaking country and learn the language before trying Paraguay. Any suggestions...

Your comments are most welcome.  Thanks.

Oh man...

Rick, I stand by me opinion, either your trying to con someone, or just plain crazy :D
and the same goes for that girlfriend of yours.
$15.00 per Hectare??? :thanks:  Do you really think land would still be that cheap and so much money to be made??? C'on man, get real.
And selling your cattle to Brazilians?Sure that is done, but that is mostly only for illegal business.Most of the time you sell your cattle to a Brazilian that has some land here in Py. on the border to Br.and he will then get them over the border somehow at night time because the meat price is a little bit better over there.Enough slaughter house is Py these days so no need to to get into that kind of business.

Rick, my father who does land-brokering as a hobby in the Chaco have a piece of land for you RIGHT NOW.
1800ha. at $175 a Ha. Has a fence around it but nothing else.
After you've bought that it will still cost you $350-$400 per Ha. to get it clean, fenced in and have water. Its 130km from the nearest tar road so when it rains you are stuck wherever you are.
What do you think land that's already been cleaned and has everything gonna cost you...?
Money is sure to be made in the cattle farming business these days in Py, but you don't just jump in and money starts springing out, its a normal but very good investment, one of the best in Py these days I would say.It also goes without saying I'm only talking about the Chaco, the east-side of Py is for planting and only having problems with cattle theft and pheasants that may come to squat on your land which would then cost you a nice little load of money to get them off again...

She also tells me that duplexes are being constructed for $80K land and bldg, and sold for $250K todias dias. Any feedback on this, as well?

The last time I looked out of my window Py was still a 3'd world country.The boom WILL/MUST come sometime, but when...
I'm not a expert on property brokering here in Asu. but I DO KNOW I'm not seeing people running around like crazy buying, building and selling.Though there is a lot of construction going on almost everywhere, its mostly for business purposes. 

Rick, if your the true thing, I say again, come, BUT WITHOUT your girlfriend.If I were you I would be scared to the people she may introduce me to, you may never know...

My fears are that the insiders will be disgruntled with an outsider getting into their game.  You know... we'll break a ya knee caps, kind of stuff?  This number one.

This is not the wild-west where someone has a monopoly, you do things right and nobody will bother you.

Number two: About those crimes I mentioned.  A famous ex-model Paraguyan was abducted in posh area of Asuncion, and barely escaped with her life.  The barbed wire and guards I've heard about.

Sure, unfortunately  some high profile kidnappings has happened these last past years, but that's just what they were, HIGH PROFILE.This is not Mexico, not yet anyway and hopefully never. 

Ok, point of story. Land isn't so cheap as it was 10 years ago and that's all due to meat and soya exports, but there is still a lot of money to be made, especially in the meat sector, I'm not seeing Us human getting fewer on this planet in the near future and we all must eat...

Good luck with whatever you decide to do.

Now I feel the need to elaborate on one of my opinions.

Your girlfriend.
I am not saying stay away from Paraguayan woman. I personally know of mixed marriages here that's the true thing but the same goes for instances that the complete opposite was the only plan in mind... (and it turned those people lives into hell mostly )
Just remember "love is blind",  think twice and make sure 3 times about anything before you do it.

Rick123 :

She also tells me that duplexes are being constructed for $80K land and bldg, and sold for $250K todias dias. Any feedback on this, as well?

I really don't think this is the case... Not sure about cost of development, but $250k seems steep for what you can buy out there.  I think someone may have also mentioned, buyers.  Doesn't matter what it's worth if there aren't any buyers.  $125k/unit seems steep for your average middle class white collar.

I'll ask around.

Hi Rick,
I am Paraguayan and my family lives on cattle ranching for 2nd or 3rd generation now.  I can tell you that when you get all sorted (installations, workforce, etc) you can get 20-35% income per year.

It is not too bad, but this also means you need to deal with a lot of issues:  buying cattle, control the feeding, manage the workforce, sell, etc.

If you want to explore opportunities, you can contact one of the several companies that invest on cattle ranching rather than contact family owned business.

One link:

Regarding land price, it is about 1,000 USD to 5,000 USD per hectare for all purpose.  In the Chaco region, which is good land but needs a lot of investment for water storage, etc you can find cheaper.  But you will have to invest a lot on infrastructure and water storage.

Feel free to ask more specific questions.



Hi Rick,
there is one thing I cannot understand about your girlfriend. On one hand she is making you hot about Pataguay telling you that everything is so cheap, on the other hand she wants to stay in the US. What´s her point? My husband was american (he passed away January 2005) and I still live here in Paraguay, never want to live enywhere else. I am from Germany. I just want to tell you that I think the same about coming on your own. You will find very quickly good and bad contacts and then it´s upt to you to sort all this out. One thing you should always keep in your mind. Whatever you do, you will need 3 times more for it then you would need in the US. About busyness: if you really want to make money, there are only 3 places in the whole country where you can do this, Asuncion, Ciudad del Este, Chaco. And for all these places you don´t need only money. Most import thing in this country are the right contacts.So what you really need to get started is a lot of time.
About crime:I feel safer down here than in any other country, this is not Mexico. If it was really dangerous I would be the first one getting out of here.

Good luck Christine

Hi Christine,

Regarding your statement, "Whatever you do, you will need 3 times more for it then you would need in the US.," do you feel that applies to buying a house as well?


Hi Tom,

you can buy a house very quickly but you have to be carefully. If you are interested in a property don´t go yourselve asking for the price, send a paraguayan friend. Spend the money for any local professional to check out all the paperwork. Pay him for going to the register office and let him make sure that everything is ok with this property. Once you payed for the property and all the paperwork is done you have to wait for the real Escritura which can take a long time, but this is normal and no problem. You can move into your new home as soon as the seller has got his money. But there is a big difference between buying a house with a few squaremeters of land and a property with many acres of land.
Never listen to people who offer you "very special opportunities".
Best thing for newcomers in this country is to rent a house first and get used to everything.

Good luck

Hi Tom,

that really means everything. Buying a house includes a longtime paperwork. That is the reason why it is so important to check out the property situation first. But once you sign the contract you can take over the property the same day and the property will be blocked for other buyers which makes it impossible for the old owner to sell the house twice or using the Property for getting money from a bank. In my case I got the original papers (escritura) for my house 1,5 years after buying it.

Good luck

I guess you have plenty of information. My suggestion is for you to come here and do your research. I believe expat members can help you better. My wife and son do not speak the language but they get around. Usually locals likes foreigners and they treat them very well. We came in April and so far, no problems ... But everything is very slowwwww including the Internet (we have fiber optics)
cattle, real estate and forestry .. Yes those are good bz but here there is a lot to do. Chilean are looking to buy properties to build houses for middle class U$ 80,000 to 100,000 As an Architect, construction is not very expensive but the problem is to find a good professional. I can send you some info on the country's economy but I can tell you that Paraguay is growing fast as well as Uruguay. Anyway we live downtown but we would rather move to the countryside.
Victor & Donna Franco

Looking to establish communications with businesses in Paraguay. Any Paraguayans or U.S business owners here doing business in Paraguay?

I am doing business in Paraguay in the area of eco-tourism and farming.

This is a really old thread.  But for business owners in PY I'd suggest hooking up with them on the Facebook site "Expats in Paraguay".   Thousands of members and many are expats running business's here..

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