Brazilians have been courted in recent years by U.S. developers seeking to raise capital through the EB-5 program. But last month, the industry took a big step to cement Brazil’s status as one of the fastest-growing players in the EB-5 world—a shift that could be a boon for South Florida’s economy.

The trade group EB-5 Investors Magazine hosted the largest industrywide event Brazil has seen to date, according to the event’s organizers. The April 12 expo in São Paulo attracted nearly 300 attendees and brought in key sponsors including EB-5 regional centers from Florida, California and New York and other major stakeholders, such as the financial services company NES Financial. EB-5 Investors Magazine already has plans to return to Brazil in future years, to further educate potential investors and validate the EB-5 program in the local market.