* Veteran banker headed Gávea's credit unit
* Previously was head of Santander's investment bank
* Replaces Berquo, who will head private banking unit
SAO PAULO, Feb 22 (Reuters) - JPMorgan Chase & Co on Friday named veteran banker José Berenguer Neto as senior country officer for Brazil, where the investment banking giant is growing its advisory and capital markets business.
Berenguer, for years a senior executive and head of the investment banking and retail banking units at Banco Santander Brasil SA, will start on April 1 and report to Mary Callahan Erdoes, head of JPMorgan Asset Management, and Martín Marrón, JPMorgan's chief executive for Latin America, the bank said in a statement.
Berenguer replaces Claudio Berquo, who took over the Brazilian unit in 2009 and will remain head of private banking in Brazil for JPMorgan, a spokesman for the bank in São Paulo said.
Berenguer had a senior money-management role at Gávea Investimentos, a Rio de Janeiro-based private equity and hedge fund controlled by JPMorgan.
JPMorgan's Brazilian unit is currently the nation's 15th-largest bank by assets.