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Banking

BTG looking to enter Brazilian retail banking

BTG Pactual is considering entering the high-net-worth retail banking market in Brazil, says the president of Chilean-based financial institution Celfin Capital.

Juan Andrés Camus Camus told Euromoney that BTG Pactual’s acquisition of Celfin should be complete by the end of the year, and says that during the negotiations BTG Pactual has been particularly interested in Celfin’s high-net-worth banking business.

“[BTG Pactual] doesn’t have any retail activity,” he says. “They have a kind of hyper-net-worth client business but nothing like our private banking business, which is very important to us and focused on a different segment.”

Camus adds that BTG’s management team has been looking at Celfin’s retail systems. “What they have found out is that there is an enormous segment between $1 million and $20 million and they want to understand [our] methodology and how we manage that. Interestingly, what they have found is the main restriction they [currently] have is basically software and technology problems.” Camus says Chile’s free-trade agreement with Brazil has enabled the bank to have access to banking software at convenient prices.

Camus also says BTG is planning to expand its physical presence within Brazil. “What they have is lack of people and they want to expand and open perhaps three new offices in Brazil – and in Brazil talent is very difficult to find,” he says, adding that he does not expect any reduction in Celfin’s headcount. “We do not have any overlapping and [the HR issue] will be very simple.”

Camus says negotiations are proceeding well and anticipates that the final contracts should be signed this year. He says the enlarged organisation will retain the Celfin brand in Chile, Colombia and Peru.

For the full interview with Celfin’s Camus, read Euromoney’s November issue

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