UPDATE 3-Brazil's BTG Pactual buys Swiss wealth firm BSI for $1.7 bln

lunes 14 de julio de 2014 10:39 GYT

* "It adds a bit of colour to the financial arena" -BTG's Esteves

* Generali to book net loss of 100 mln euros from disposal

* Italian insurer completes disposal of non-core assets (Adds comments from BTG Pactual CEO)

By Lisa Jucca

MILAN, July 14 (Reuters) - Brazilian investment bank Grupo BTG Pactual is buying Swiss private bank BSI for a knock-down 1.5 billion Swiss francs ($1.7 billion), extending an overseas push by the Sao Paulo-based lender.

The deal, the second biggest in the bank sector this year, brings to an end a long-running attempt to sell the unit by Italian insurer Generali.

BTG, controlled by billionaire financier André Esteves, said the Swiss unit would become its global wealth management business, increasing its wealth and asset management assets to more than $200 billion and giving it a big presence in Switzerland, the world's biggest financial offshore market.

It marks the boldest move by BTG to diversify away from Latin America, and Esteves said he planned further international growth in the next five years.

"It's good for the world to have a global investment company like us headquartered in an emerging market. It adds a little bit of colour to the financial arena," Esteves, also chief executive, told reporters on a conference call.   Continuación...