* Banco do Brasil mulls bidding for Bankia's U.S. unit
* Seeks share of overseas profit to rise to 13 percent
* Expansion in the U.S. has taken longer than expected
SAO PAULO, April 2 Banco do Brasil SA
is on the lookout for takeover targets in the United States to
provide more banking services to a growing Brazilian community
in the world's No. 1 economy, a source with knowledge of the
matter said on Tuesday.
Brazil's largest bank by assets is considering bidding for
the Florida-based unit of Spain's Bankia SA, known as
City National Bank of Florida, and another lender in New Jersey,
said the source, who declined to speak on the record because
they were not allowed to comment publicly on the matter.
Since early 2009, Chief Executive Officer Aldemir Bendine
has focused international expansion on the U.S. retail banking
market as well as Colombia, Perú and Chile, yet with limited
success as valuations remain too expensive. In the U.S., the
goal is to grow in Florida, Massachusetts, New Jersey and other
states with a large community of Brazilians and Latinos.
A spokesman for state-controlled Banco do Brasil in Brasilia
said by telephone that the bank "does not comment on market
Bankia, which was bailed out in recent months, is disposing
of City National in a bid to streamline its businesses. Bankia
representatives could not be reached for comment after business
In February, executives said Banco do Brasil was looking for
takeover targets in Florida and New Jersey following the April
2011 acquisition of Coral Gables, Florida-based EuroBank.
The bank wants to increase the share of profit from
non-Brazilian units to 13 percent this year from about 8 percent
last year, the source said.