BTG Pactual CEO sees more Mexico-Brazil M&A

MEXICO CITY Thu Jan 30, 2014 4:19pm EST

MEXICO CITY Jan 30 (Reuters) - Economic weakness in Brazil is making companies in the Latin American giant attractive to Mexican investors, the head of Latin America's largest investment bank said on Thursday.

Andre Esteves, chief executive of Brazil's BTG Pactual, said that the weak Brazilian real had prompted lots of interest from Mexicans wanting to buy into companies in Brazil.

"I have been here two days and seen lots of interest from Mexican companies who want to invest in Brazil," Esteves said.

The comments raise the prospect of deals in a country that has seen foreign investors step in back in recent weeks amid a worldwide emerging market sell-off.

An economic slowdown in China and faltering investment have raised the prospect of a sovereign downgrade in Brazil, long one of the world's most attractive emerging markets.

Esteves was speaking at the official opening of BTG Pactual's brokerage operation in Mexico. Javier Artigas, who runs the group's Mexico office, said it aims to have 2 percent to 3 percent of trading volumes in the Mexican equity market in 2014.

The investment bank also has offices in Chile, Peru and Colombia.

A couple walks along the rough surf during sunset at Oahu's North Shore, December 26, 2013. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

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