When we envisioned Rewilder, we certainly knew we wanted to make it crypto native to bring transparency and traceability to wildlife conservation. We also believed a foundation would be the best legal figure to bring credibility and assure our long lasting mission. However, what wasn’t totally clear for us and became one of our main subjects for research and development: where should we buy land?
As you may think, not all jurisdictions are equal, even less when it matters property rights, notaries rules and costs. In addition, land conservation is something still in an early stage for the world agenda, for most of the nations in this planet any resource (aka any piece of nature) should be something we should take advantage of and make business, but as you know, we’re in another business.
That said, it wasn’t an easy decision to make, the location we chose would define what we can and can’t do with the land, the extra costs and work we would have, and at the end of the game, it could even make the project successful or not.
Today, we want to share with you that, after a process of months that involved multiple people on our team, we’re happy to say we’ve selected Uruguay to make our first investment. The reasons for choosing this country are varied, and definitely that 3 people from our team had decided to live in this country made a big difference.
One of the main reasons to choose Uruguay is its political stability, it has one of the strongest democracies in the world and its economy has a high freedom value. To sum up, for us a key strategic value was the possibility for a non profit in the USA to buy land overseas, and Uruguay provided a low bureaucracy for this matter.
Another reason for selecting this country is its potential for biodiversity protection. Now, considering countries and regions with a wide biodiversity, Uruguay doesn’t rank high. However, Uruguay has abundant wildlife thanks to its huge aquifer of fresh water. It’s also a country that for centuries (and still), the main economic development in its territory has been extensive farming, which is a practice that has a low impact in the ecosystem. In addition, it’s a country with a very low population, it has one of the lowest densities in the world, making it a place with a reduced penetration of factories, pollution, and urbanisation.
Regarding our capacity for buying land and our impact, although Uruguay is an expensive place to live, ranks 4th in the big mac index, being 6.6% below the USA, the value for properties are similar to its neighbour countries and most of South America - this is an outstanding and great data point for particularly any conservation project!
Finally, as we previously said, 3 members of the Rewilder team have decided to move to this country in the last years, making it more affordable while also reducing operational procedures, which is something that we should try to make as efficient as we can.
Other final contenders in the decision were Brazil and Costa Rica, which were discarded (at least for this first project) due to very high bureaucracy and low political stability. A huge thanks to Sofi from the Rewilder team who made most of the research to guide our decision-making.
We want to know what you think about our decision. What other variables and data would you have considered? Where would you buy for natural protection? We plan to do future investments and we would love to have your opinion.