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MEXICO - Economy

Roberto Díaz Bilbao

President & CEO, Club 51

Bio

Serving as the President & CEO of CLUB 51 MX since 2020, Roberto Díaz Bilbao brings over three decades of experience with expertise in corporate finance, controllership, hospitality, and service provision. He is also Founder & CEO of Cava Virtual Oficial and Founder & CEO of SATRAÁ Food Services. His diverse background includes roles such as CFO at PINSA and Quest Diagnostics, Country Controller at Shell, and General Manager at Volkos. Díaz holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting and finance from ITESM and an MBA from Universidad Iberoamericana.

Club 51’s vision is to become the most prominent club in Latin America, focusing on expansion, international brand marketing, and meeting client demands, including the development of a unique hotel. […]
Club 51’s vision is to become the most prominent club in Latin America, focusing on expansion, international brand marketing, and meeting client demands, including the development of a unique hotel.
Can you outline the new vision for this emblematic club in Mexico City?

Our vision is for Club 51 to become the most important club in Latam. As part of this plan, we have projects underway that are about to come to fruition that will enable us to expand and market our brand overseas, ensuring that Club 51 will remain top of mind in Mexico. Right now, we are focused on making sure our clients’ demands are being met day to day. We have listened to the services being requested and want to ensure we can meet or even exceed them. We are currently developing a 31-room hotel on the 51st floor of the Torre Mayor skyscraper, and we will be the first club in Latam with its own hotel. Expected to open in the summer of 2024, we will literally be the highest hotel in Latam. Our second project will expand our event space capacity from 250 people up to 600 people, encompassing 6,000sqm of installations. The next project involves a new club that we plan to launch in Madrid, and we have a well-designed marketing plan to promote this. The club will also be on the 51st story of a building, and we subsequently plan to launch in another six cities, all of them on the 51st floors. This is our signature. When we replicate our club in other countries, we will maintain our trademark style. There are many clubs around the world but none of them have our style or connect with their clients like we do. Our principal value is generating a unique experience and environment for business leaders that helps them achieve their objectives. That is what we do: generate experiences through our services.

What challenges do your members typically face, and how has Club 51 helped them overcome these challenges?

Everything revolves around the experience. Club 51 recognizes this and understands how our clients can use these experiences to close business. At the moment, there is a great deal of discussion and hype about Mexico due to nearshoring, and this has been reflected through the number of foreigners joining our club right now. Within three years, I expect half of our members to be foreigners, and the club can be a vital facilitator for these new members. We have relations with over 35 ambassadors, and all of them use Club 51 to determine the feasibility of opening businesses in Mexico. They also use it for networking, as we have high-level members from all over the world across various sectors. We have a service called an international business bureau that we use this to connect people. Club 51 is not just about beautiful installations or décor; it is about real business and making things happen. We organize events and experiences for networking that makes it significantly easier for business leaders to close a deal later.

What profile do you value amongst your members?

We have done research about our ideal members. It is not just based on income but about having a certain profile. We have a committee that decides who can and cannot join, and this is all to ensure we protect our current members. Every day we receive dozens of requests from people wanting to join our club. We have several key requirements: members must be interested in progress; the company’s business and personal values must be a fit with ours; and it must be a legitimate and aboveboard company. We have members from some of the 25 richest families in Mexico in our club, and when they come up to the 51st floor, they can leave everything behind. It is a safe space, and we cannot allow anything to ruin this. Club 51 has a limit of 1,000 members, though we might see around 15,000 different people coming through our doors a month because they are our members’ guests.

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