Over the last few weeks, Bradesco, one of the largest private banks in Brazil, has announced that Luiz Carlos Trabuco, its current CEO, will soon be leaving his post in order to take over for the outgoing chairman, Lazaro Brandao. Brandao has decided to finally hang it up after a long and prosperous career with the bank spanning more than 75 years.
The nonagenarian financier is one of the oldest currently serving chairpersons in the world. Even so, many of Bradesco’s shareholders are not happy to see him leave. Brandao has overseen the period of the bank’s most spectacular growth. As chairman, he oversaw an increase in the bank’s stock price between 1990 and 2009 of more than 300 times, one of the most incredible periods of growth that any Brazilian business has ever sustained.
But even as some express doubts about the future of the company in Brandao’s absence, the elder statesman of Brazilian finance is adamant that Trabuco is the best possible man for the job. Brandao has repeatedly stated that both he and Trabuco have long seen eye-to-eye on the most important issues facing the bank. And Trabuco himself has an incredible amount of time in with the bank. In fact, Trabuco is one of the key people responsible at the nuts-and-bolts level for the bank’s rapid increase in value over the decades of the 90s and 2000s.
Trabuco has also worked for the bank for his entire career and, like Brandao, was able to pull himself up by the bootstraps of his own ingenuity and grit. He first came to work for the bank in 1969, at the age of just 18. Fresh out of high school, the young Trabuco had gotten excellent grades throughout school, but he and his family lacked the funds needed to send him to college. Trabuco figured that he would go out and get a temporary job that would enable him to begin paying his way through college.
That first job turned out to be at a local bank that was seeking help for the summer. The bank was Bradesco, at that time, just a small local thrift institution with a handful of branches around the small town of Marilia, Sao Paulo. Trabuco was hired the moment he went in for the interview.
Over the next decades, the temporary job would become a career, and Trabuco would rise through the ranks with startling speed and consistency. In 1984, he got his first real executive role with the bank. As the head of the company’s marketing department, he proved to be an able leader and a solid strategist, helping to improve the bank’s brand image considerably.
Next, Trabuco was tapped to head up the bank’s financial planning division in 1992. There, he was instrumental in bringing in new business from the country’s new and expanding class of wealthy elites. These new deposits would among to billions of new dollars on the bank’s balance sheets, before all was said and done. This enabled Bradesco to originate tens of billions of dollars in new loans, many of which were focused on the booming commercial real estate sector. This was a key factor in the bank’s rise to national prominence, and it was largely attributed to the initiatives of Trabuco.
Trabuco was also responsible for many other key contributions to the overall good fortunes of the company. As he takes over the direction of the board of directors, there is little doubt that his immense business administration skills and general visionary leadership will continue to be an invaluable asset to the bank that has employed him for nearly five decades.