A Survivor's Tale

Nov 7, 2003

Ricardo Handley personifies the wheeling and dealing that characterized Argentina in the 1990s. Now, after years in obscurity, he is back in the public eye.

Ricardo Handley pioneered some of Argentina's biggest and most visible deals when he was the head of Citibank in Argentina during the late 1980s and early 1990s. In those days he was as controversial as he was glamorous - he appeared frequently in glossy society magazines as well as the business press - until he quit to run his cattle ranch in the interior. Now aged 59 he is back, looking older but with the same swagger as before. He is pushing the same idea that made him famous 15 years ago, offering creditors a way to convert defaulted sovereign debt into equity in Argentine companies. Handley is hunting for investors stuck with Argentine government bonds that have not been paid a penny in almost two years. He wants to convince investors to put their bonds into a fund he has set up to invest in local companies. He says, "We...

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