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#469 Juan Carlos Escotet $4.11B

Random fact: Escotet served as head of Venezuela's banking association.


Juan Carlos Escotet is the chairman and CEO of Caracas, Venezuela-based Banesco Banco Universal. Banesco bought Spain's NCG Banco SA in 2013 for 1 billion euros ($1.3 billion). He has a bank in Panama, Banesco SA, and another in Miami, Banesco USA, with branches across Latin America and the Caribbean.

As of Aug. 18, 2017:
Last change -$74.9M (-1.8%)
YTD change +$840M (+25.7%)
Industry Finance
Biggest asset Abanca Corporacion Bancaria
Citizenship Venezuela
Age 57
Wealth Self-made
View net worth over:   Max 1 year 1 quarter 1 month 1 week

Relative Value

Juan Carlos Escotet's net worth of $4.11B can buy ...

troy ounces of gold
barrels of crude oil

... and is equivalent to ...

of the GDP of the United States
of the total wealth of the 500 richest people in the world
of the top 100 U.S. college endowments
of the top 200 U.S. executives’ total awarded compensation
of U.S. existing home sales
times the median U.S. household income

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Net Worth Summary

Private asset
Public asset
Misc. liabilities
Confidence rating:

The majority of Escotet’s fortune is derived from his 66 percent stake in La Coruna, Spain-based Abanca. The bank was created in a merger with his Banco Etcheverria in 2014, after Banesco bought NCG Banco SA from the Spanish government's bank rescue fund in 2013. Abanca reported a book value of about 4 billion euros ($4.4 billion). It's valued based on the average price-to-book and price-to-earnings multiples of five publicly traded peer companies: Caixabank, Bankinter, Banco Santader, BBVA and Banco de Sabadell.

Escotet has a 70 percent stake in Panama-based Banesco. The bank reported equity of $304 million and net income of $43 million in 2016. The valuation is based on the average price-to-book multiple of five publicly traded peers: Bancolombia, Banorte, Scotiabank Peru, Itau and Banco de Chile.

Escotet also controls a smaller bank, Miami-based Banesco USA, which is valued using reported equity of $88 million for 2016 and the price-to-book value multiples of four publicly traded peers: BankUnited, Farmers National Banc, CenterState Banks and Enterprise Bancorp.

The value of his cash investments is based on an analysis of dividends, Venezuela's parallel exchange rates, lifestyle costs and market performance.

A spokeswoman said Escotet declined to comment on his net worth.


Birthdate: 1959
Family: Married, 3 children
Education: Universidad Catolica Andres Bello, Master's Degree University of Miami, Master's Degree

One of eight children of Spanish immigrants, Escotet got his start as an errand boy at a Venezuelan bank in 1976, according to a 2011 interview in the magazine Mercado de Republica Dominicana. He studied for his college degree at night while working full-time at a lender called Banco Union, then owned by the Salvatierra family. He won a spot at the Caracas stock exchange in 1986 and two years later founded a brokerage called Escotet Valores.

Escotet had accumulated enough cash by 1992 to take over the Bancentro lender and create a banking unit in Panama. He seized on a financial crisis in Venezuela to scoop up a half-dozen savings and loan institutions by the middle of the decade. Another opportunity presented itself when the Salvatierra family took out a $150 million loan from Citigroup to fend off a hostile takeover of Banco Union, according to a Dec. 19, 2012 Bloomberg News report. Escotet renegotiated the debt with Citi and, as part of the deal, merged Union into Banesco by 2002.

As Chavez increased social spending, Escotet started TodoTicket in 2004 to administer employee benefits for companies and government entities. At the same time, he invested abroad. He opened a bank in Miami in 2005, and has since started branches in Colombia, Curacao and the Dominican Republic.

Escotet served as president of Venezuela's banking association in 2010 and 2011, which brought him frequently into the public eye, including a demand from Venezuela's late president Hugo Chavez that the country's financial industry hand over cash to the government for agriculture loans. ``Escotet, let me know if you can,'' Chavez said on his weekly "Alo Presidente" program in 2011. ``If not, give me the bank, compadre. Tell me how much the bank costs, and we'll nationalize it right away.''

Since then, he's maintained a lower profile. Married with three children, he lives in Caracas.

  • 1959 Juan Carlos Escotet is born in Madrid, Spain.
  • 1976 Escotet begins working as an errand boy at a local bank.
  • 1992 Creates banking unit in Panama.
  • 1996 Acquires half a dozen Venezuelan savings and loan banks.
  • 2000 Escotet agrees to take over Banco Union, a former employer.
  • 2005 Escotet opens a bank in Miami.
  • 2011 His Panama unit opens a subsidiary in the Dominican Republic.
  • 2012 Banesco buys 70 percent of Spanish bank Banco Etcheverria.