(Recasts to add details on deals throughout)
SAO PAULO, Dec 18 (Reuters) - Brazilian investment bank Grupo BTG Pactual SA is in talks to exit its stake in Recovery do Brasil, Latin America’s largest debt collector, as part of a plan to raise cash through massive asset sales following the detention of founder André Esteves.
In a Friday securities filing, BTG Pactual said it could not confirm whether it had reached a deal to sell the Recovery stake or whether interested parties would place non-binding offers for the company. BTG Pactual did not name any potential bidders for the Recovery stake.
Reuters reported on Thursday that Lone Star Funds had entered exclusive talks to purchase BTG Pactual’s 73 percent stake in Recovery. The stake could be worth up to 1.7 billion reais ($439 million) if the sale includes the platform that Recovery uses to price loans, according to a source.
BTG Pactual also said it was negotiating the sale of an unspecified amount of non-performing loans to an undisclosed bidder. The combined value of the Recovery stake sale and the bad loan portfolio would be worth the equivalent of 0.2 percent of BTG Pactual’s assets.
The bank confirmed that 900 million reais worth of loans were sold to larger rival Itaú BBA SA, the wholesale and investment banking unit of Itaú Unibanco Holding SA, Brazil’s biggest bank by market value.
Both the loan sales and the disposal of stakes in non-banking investments like Recovery are allowing BTG Pactual to downsize its balance sheet after Esteves’ arrest triggered client fund withdrawals and blocked access to capital markets financing.
Heavily dependent on short-term market funding and with about 55 percent of liabilities due for refinancing within 90 days, BTG Pactual is assuring clients that operations are normal.
São Paulo-traded units in the bank, a blend of voting and non-voting stock in BTG Pactual’s banking and participations divisions, fell for the second day in three on Friday.
$1 = 3.8990 Brazilian reais Reporting by Guillermo Parra-Bernal; Additional reporting by Silvio Cascione in Brasilia; Editing by Mark Potter and Lisa Von Ahn