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Industry News

BTG Seeks Brazil Pharmacy Acquisitions

4 August 2010

(Bloomberg) August 4, 2010 – Brazilian billionaire Andre Esteves’ BTG Investments LP is looking to buy pharmacies as consumer spending drives growth in Latin America’s biggest economy.

“The rumors are true,” Esteves told reporters at a conference in Santiago, Chile. “We are promoting consolidation in the pharmacy sector.”

Esteves said he is seeking private equity deals “in all industries” after his company bought back the investment bank, now called Banco BTG Pactual SA, from UBS AG for $2.5 billion last year.

BTG purchased a stake in Empresa de Investimento em Energias Renovaveis SA for 300 million reais ($171 million) in October and 50 percent of Estapar, Brazil’s largest parking-lot operator, in May. Valor Economico reported July 6 that BTG is in talks to buy eight stores from Farmacia dos Pobres, without saying where it obtained the information.

Brazil’s gross domestic product will expand 6.6 percent this year, according to the median estimate of economists surveyed by Bloomberg. The economy, whose status as a commodity producer is overstated, is more of an “internal demand story,” Esteves said.

Brazilian initial public offerings probably will return to “normal” levels after Petroleo Brasileiro SA’s planned sale of as much as $25 billion in stock, he said.

By Eduardo Thomson