BTG Pactual hires Metro manager in metals warehousing push

LONDON, March 20 Thu Mar 20, 2014 3:46pm EDT

LONDON, March 20 (Reuters) - Brazilian investment bank BTG Pactual has hired a former manager at Goldman Sachs' warehouse company Metro International as it expands its own metals storage business, sources with knowledge of the situation said.

Warehousing marketing manager Gabriella Vagnini left Metro after six years earlier this month, to join BTG Pactual in a similar role, the sources said.

BTG, controlled by billionaire financier André Esteves, last year made a bold push into the global commodities trading and storage business just as other banks bowed out, betting it can avoid the regulatory pressure rattling rivals.

The Sao Paulo-headquartered bank in August hired Shon Loth, a metals warehousing expert formerly with Noble, to build up its own storage business. More recently the bank has applied to register its warehouses with both the London Metal Exchange (LME), the world's biggest metal market, and with the U.S. exchange CME Group.

It expects the LME to approve its first two warehouses, one in Detroit and one in Owensboro, United States, within a couple of weeks, the sources said.

BTG and Vagnini declined to comment.

Last year, BTG expressed interest in buying JPMorgan Chase & Co's physical commodities business including the Henry Bath warehousing unit, but JPMorgan said on Wednesday it is selling it to trader Mercuria for $3.5 billion. (Reporting by Silvia Antonioli; Editing by Anthony Barker)