The Bank of the Year
Brazil’s government-controlled lender is using a natural size advantage to pursue niches it does not already dominate. Careful international expansion is next for Banco do Brasil.
by Ben Miller
The credit crisis was less cruel to LatAm banks than to many
global peers. For government-controlled banks, it may turn out
to have been a boon.
Banco do Brasil (BdB),
Latin Americas largest bank by assets, was among the many
government channels for counter-cyclical policy during the
credit crisis. Meanwhile, private sector competitors played
conservative during the period. With growth returning to Brazil
and the region in the past year, BdB has shown no sign of
relinquishing the role, or the market share it has gained.
BdB is the 37th largest bank in the world by market cap,
according to the FT, lagging Itaú (11th), Bradesco
(25th) and Santander Brasil (34th). BdB steadily climbed up
from 39th place in 2009, and 64th in 2006. BdB had $83.4
billion market cap, as of mid-September, compared to $157
billion for Itaú Unibanco, $107.7 billion for Bradesco,
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