With around 80 million customers and growth, Banco do Brasil (BBAS3) is jealous of its position in the market. One year and four months into the foundation’s presidency, Fausto Ribeiro believes part of the formula led to the highest quarterly result in history (adjusted net income of R$7.8 billion between April and June, which outpaced the income of private competitors) came with a vision seeking, in short , to prevent customers from leaving the bank just to earn higher rates on segregated products.
“When looking at risk-adjusted return (RAR), we have in the past stopped doing some trades” Estadao / broadcasta real-time news system for Grupo Estado.
“If you (the customer) let him be contacted by another bank, I will open a risky window. We are trying to close the blockade.” As earnings grow, investors often test BB for potential dividend increases. This year, the government joined the chorus. BP said no, and Ribeiro denies pressure. “There was absolutely no pressure from the government to pay more dividends.”
Read key excerpts from the interview below.
I said that BB should look for more partners abroad. Are there really discussions?
To expand a business, we need options. There is a figure from the central bank that says there are 204 billion US dollars declared by Brazilians abroad, in assets. Look at the size of this market. Setting up a qualified overseas consultancy requires time and investment. Who has it ready? Big Players: JP Morgan, Director, UPS itself. Since we have a partnership with UBS, we asked them to open the door for us in the US market. But the idea is not to have exclusivity. First, we will design the process using UBS and, with experience, open up the scope.
Everyone is trying to solve this by acquisition. BB no?
We already have our bank, which has a door with Brazilian businessmen. What do investors need? From a bank, from a broker, which is BB Securities, and from a consulting firm.
How does the BB Asset partner search process work?
We have a strategy to find a strategic partner, of an international size, to get faster feedback, which can improve management in terms of tools, bring technology and this internationalization. The process has progressed, and it (the result) will be finished by the end of the year.
Banks said they did not see credit quality concerns for large companies. Do you care about BB?
There is nothing serious. It was the already bad stage, at the time of the major construction companies, which made the banks to retreat. In other cases, the bank cuts a very tight deal: we have cash flow, we do payroll. The company doesn’t open the door if you don’t give it credit, then we try to get it into the ecosystem. It’s the same in agribusiness, commodities are at the highest levels. It puts pressure on inflation, but Brazil generates enormous wealth, and our trade balance is great. This is a good sign, and at some point you will work to relieve stress. On the other hand, they benefit the farmers.
Can the bank sell more products to them?
A capitalist farmer expands his production area, invests in equipment and can search for alternatives for production. Buying a house, a car. When we started managing, we changed some concepts. Looking at the risk-adjusted return (RAR), in the past, we stopped doing some trades. Some seem to make less profit, but the farmer also buys machines, resells them, pays wages, buys a house, has a card… When you see a customer’s RAR, you start looking at it from another perspective. When I arrived, we were in seventh place on the stock exchange. The battle for the exchange rate is tough, and the customer will strive to the lowest level. If I let him get close to another bank, I would open a risky window. On the other hand, a good salesperson starts introducing other things. We are trying to close the siege.
Is the volume the result of the bank giving up the margin to keep the customer?
He gave up a bit of margin to get the whole business done. It is an extended vision. Perhaps this is a secret for us because we were able to do good business.
Who is attacking in agriculture?
Today, there are 22 institutions. In the other harvest, the bank had a portfolio of R$205 billion – today, it has R$262 billion. We had Banco do Brasil with a big advantage, Bradesco in second, Itaú in third, Santander in fourth, and then came the co-ops. Then the fund. I look very good in competition. Agricultural market is not easy. Our history is very old, and our first operations date back to the first coffee cycle. In 1954, the first agricultural credit directory was created within the Bank of Brazil. We had good courses and bad courses. The farmers have gone bankrupt many times, and the bank has the experience to help them. We have a very fast treadmill. We got to process 7000 transactions in one day. We made 625,000 deals in the last harvest.
The discussion took place with the government about dividends and on what terms?
Came in a job for state-owned companies. We received the message and responded to it via the message. There was no pressure from the government to pay more dividends. There is complete independence. It’s not just the government’s desire: all shareholders want more profits. It would be great if I could distribute 100%, but as a bank custodian, in order to maintain the strategy, I need to conserve that capital.
How did you see the reaction to the results?
I was very impressed. We put the bank to focus on what has always been a champion.
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