Bradesco Enlarges Its Empire
Brazil's largest private-sector bank, Banco Bradesco, has
added a bank, an asset manager and a finance company to its
financial services fold, making a decisive statement about its
large-scale strategy. Bradesco's rival, Banco Itaú, also
recently made two key acquisitions (see following item) as the
two banks squared off in the ongoing battle for a share of the
Brazilian bank market. Low interest rates and intense
competition mean that the sector could consolidate even more
In January Bradesco outbid Itaú for Banco Mercantil
de São Paulo, paying Brazil's Vidigal family R$1.372
billion ($567 million) for an 82.2% stake in the bank.
Mercantil has R$8.9 billion in assets, which will increase
Bradesco's assets to R$116.3 billion, and gives the bank an
additional 708 million customers and 220 branches.
Bradesco also announced the purchase...
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