Private Bank launches Bahamian trading desk.

Itau Private Bank

 Source: The Tribune Newspaper

A LATIN American private bank yesterday said it has launched a new Bahamas-based trading desk, creating five jobs.

Itaú Private Bank, in a statement, said the new facility was geared towards promoting investment by Brazilian and Latin American clients in the offshore market. The trading desk is designed to give clients access to foreign assets in an easier, more streamlined and flexible way.

"We set up this trading desk to meet a rising demand from our clients. We believe this new service works best when the provider is in direct contact with the client," said Carlos Albertotti, Itaú Private Bank's Miami-based commercial director.

The new services is targeted at investors with specific investment needs, and who have familiarity with international financial markets and a high degree of sophistication.

To run the new desk, Itaú has hired five financial services executives, four of whom came from Credit Suisse Bahamas - Gustavo Fraga Abrunhosa; Marcelo Aagesen; Carlos Eduardo Fernandes; and Gilmar Oliveira. The fifth, Alberto Tani, comes from UBS Brazil. The team will report to Roberto Martins, head of global wealth services for Itaú's international Private Ban in Miami.

"Coming from a position of leadership in the internal Brazilian market, our goal is to become the private bank of choice for Brazilian clients investing offshore," said Carlos Constantini, chief executive of Itaú USA, and head of international operations for its private bank.

Itaú Private Bank is ranked third largest among private banks that manage the wealth of Latin American clients in offshore markets, with $22 billion in assets under management. This represents 20 per cent of Itaú's total private banking portfolio.

International private banks portfolios are growing as amnesty programmes are rolled out in Latin America, and interest rates decline across the region. Itaú Private Bank is aiming to exploit this by pushing ahead with its international growth strategy, believing it is well-positioned to attract clients seeking diversification abroad.