Bradesco, one of the most powerful banking brands in Latin America appointed Luiz Carlos Trabuco as executive president in 2009, a position that only four executives have held in the bank’s 65-year history. Luiz Carlos Trabuco assumed leadership of Bradesco with a major challenge ahead of him: the executive board was seeking to once again become the largest retail bank in Brazil and Latin America, a position held until the merger of Itau and Unibanco.
Prior to his appointment to lead Bradesco, Luiz Carlos Trabuco served as vice president of the bank’s lucrative insurance division. He has been at Bradesco since the early 1970s, and his name had previously been mentioned as one of the most likely candidates to succeed Márcio Cypriano, a man who was responsible for strategically acquiring the Brazilian operations of JPMorgan Chase, American Express and HSBC.
When Luiz Carlos Trabuco took over as president of Bradesco, the bank was valued at nearly $134 billion, which meant that it lagged behind Itau Unibanco by about $47 billion. The HSBC acquisition gave Bradesco a $5 billion boost, which the new president considered to be first of many steps that needed to be taken in order to once again become the strongest bank in Latin America. Until a few years ago, Bradesco mostly relied on mergers and acquisitions to increase its financial footprint; that has largely changed with Luiz Carlos Trabuco at the helm, for he believes in a more organic approach to banking.
Bradesco has traditionally been known as an institution that provides quality banking services; this distinction often translated into higher fees. Trabuco sought to change this in 2015 as he ordered a reduction of fees across all of Bradesco’s products and services. At a time when most banks in Brazil were trying to make the most of the fees they charge, Bradesco took a more traditional route of increasing deposits at all costs. Another measure ordered by Luiz Carlos Trabuco was to increase the presence of Bradesco by more than 200 new branches in regions where customers enjoy brick-and-mortar banking instead of going online.
Luiz Carlos Trabuco is a firm believer in reaching customers through meaningful marketing and public relations. His formal education was not in banking or finance; his degrees from the University of Sao Paulo are in philosophy and sociology. When he took over the Bradesco’s marketing department in the 1980s, he modernized the bank’s image through a clever public relations campaign that welcomed journalists to cover an institution that had been mostly known as a stuffy refuge for “old money.” Luiz Carlos Trabuco also believes in segmentation of services; he believes that Brazilians of all income levels should be able to bank with Bradesco, but he also thinks that clients who enjoy higher net worth should receive preferential treatment.
It is worth mentioning that Luiz Carlos Trabuco is credited with increasing the value of Bradesco’s insurance division by more than 35 percent during his tenure as vice president. His effort effectively made Bradesco the most valuable insurance brand in Latin America. Under his leadership, the bank has been able to quickly overtake the market position previously enjoyed by Banco do Brasil.
Find more about Luiz Carlos Trabuco: http://www1.folha.uol.com.br/mercado/2015/08/1666207-para-presidente-do-bradesco-crise-e-grave-e-solucao-exige-grandeza.shtml