Angola’s BIC May Target a Small Insurer in Portugal, CEO Says

Banco BIC SA, Angola’s biggest private bank by number of branches, could make a bid for an insurer in Portugal after buying a local lender in the southern European country last year.

“In Portugal, it is possible that we’ll make an offer for a small insurance company,” Chief Executive Officer Fernando Teles said in a phone interview today. “BIC’s shareholders have yet to make a decision.” The CEO’s comments were previously reported by Portuguese news agency Lusa.

Banco BIC, which in the last two years paid the Portuguese state a combined 82.5 million euros ($113 million) for Lisbon-based Banco Portugues de Negocios SA’s operations in its home country as well as Cape Verde and Brazil, isn’t looking to buy more Portuguese banking assets at this time, Teles said.

“We’re focused on consolidating BPN’s operations,” Teles said.

BIC plans to open a new insurance company in Angola at the beginning of next year, the executive said, without providing details. Teles reiterated that the company plans to expand into Namibia and open a representative office in Johannesburg. The bank is also studying Botswana, Republic of Congo, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Zambia and Gabon as possible markets, Teles said in an earlier interview in March.

Teles, along with Portuguese billionaire Americo Amorim and Isabel dos Santos, the daughter of Angola’s president, are BIC’s three biggest shareholders, according to Teles.

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