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According to insiders with knowledge on the matter, family-run Brazilian banks Cambuhy Investimentos and Itaúsa Ivestimentos could acquire majority stakes worth R$3.3-3.5 billion (US$1-1.1 billion) in footwear maker Alpagartas.
The proceeds from the sale of J&F owned Alpargatas could help ease the holding’s debt following JBS’s corruption scandal. According to local press, both Cambuhy and Itaúsa are to engage in negotiations this week before the exclusivity talks expire. However, J&F, Cambuhy and Itaúsa have declined to comment on the matter.
Itaúsa oversees the fortune of Brazil’s Villela and Setubal families, who control São Paulo-based Itaú Unibanco Holding, Latin America’s largest bank by assets, while Cambuhy belongs to Brazil’s billionaire family Moreira Salles, also a major Itaú shareholder.
J&F owns 86% of Alpargatas and needs to raise RS$10.3 billion (US$3.13 billion) to cover a leniency fine. Creditors are said to have been pressuring the Batista family, owner of J&F, to renegotiate more than R$30 billion (US$9.14) of debt at J&F and JBS SA. If the bid for Alpargatas succeeds, Cambuhy and Itaúsa will split equally the Batistas’ stake.
J&F acquired Alpargatas in December 2015 from Brazilian construction conglomerate Camargo Correa. The holding’s other possible sales include dairy producer Vigor and paper and pulp manufacturer Eldorado. Together with Alpargatas, the three sales could raise an estimated R$10 billion (US$3.04 billion).
Shares of Alpargatas are reported to have reached a cumulated high of +63% since the beginning of the year.