Brazilian Credit Demand Is Up As Bradesco Welcomes A New CEO, According To Chairman Luiz Carlos Trabuco Cappi
Fifty-four-year-old Octavio Lazari has four decades of banking experience with Bradesco. He got his start in banking when he was a teenager. Lázaro de Mello Brandão and founder Amador Aguiar both though Lazari would be a banking superstar and they were right. Lazari is the current head of the bank’s insurance division, and he is one of Chairman Luiz Carlos Trabuco Cappi’s most productive executives.
Cappi is the current CEO, but he is stepping down so younger executives can tackle the all-digital banking threats that are shaking up the banking industry in Brazil. That’s not to say Cappi is heading for retirement. Cappi is taking over as chairman because long-time banker Brandão is hanging up his chairman’s shoes. Brandão is not retiring in the complete sense of the word. He will still have a desk, and an opinion when it comes to solving the challenges facing the bank.
Lazari is already talking to the press even though the shareholder’s vote is March 12th to confirm his board nomination. Lazari told the press that more Brazilians will be creditworthy in 2018, and that will help keep profit margins up as interest rates drop to their lowest level in banking history.
Lazari is not the only insurance executive to move into Bradesco’s CEO office. Trabuco Cappi was president of Seguros for six years before getting the CEO nod from Brandão. Cappi and Brandão have a 49-year work history, so Cappi was the natural choice to succeed Brandão. Brandão gave Cappi a chance in 1969 when Cappi completed his formal education. Even though that education was not bank-related, Brandão and Amador Aguiar saw his potential, so they put him in the bank’s training program. Cappi did more than the two bankers thought he would do in terms of developing a solid banking career. It didn’t take Cappi long to become one of the bank’s top executives, and he is still Bradesco’s shining star. But Capp likes to give all the credit to his capable team of executives. Seven of those executives were in the running for CEO, but Lazari was the natural choice because of his association with Seguros and Cappi.
Four of the former candidates for CEO now have board seats as the Preferred Shares in Bradesco continue their upward trend in Sao Paulo and New York. Investor relations director Alexandre Glüher, operations vice-president Josué Pancini, IT executive vice-president Mauricio Minas and Executive Vice-President of the loan division Domingos Figueiredo de Abreu, are new board members. They all have more than 20-years of experience with the bank.
Cappi and the other executives will not try to acquire more assets in 2018, according to a recent press release. The bank is still trying to sort out all the challenges from the HSBC acquisition. That acquisition is successful and most of those old HSBC units are producing revenue, but there is concern that digital banking will make many of those branches obsolete. More phone towers are creating a stronger demand for mobile shopping as well as for mobile banking, so Cappi, Lazari and the executive team will have to develop more mobile platforms to satisfy the demand. But that focus will have an impact on the 5,300 bank branches that are currently part of the Bradesco umbrella.
Investors don’t expect any surprises in 2018. Cappi will continue to be a visible presence in banking circles, and Lazari will be the new face of the bank. Both men and the executive team will work together, so Bradesco maintains its position in the international banking world as well as in the domestic market.
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