Providing Sound Advice

For Drogasil, the moment was right to leverage a combination of strengths

Fueled by an expanding middle class and a rapid rise in disposable income, Brazil had become the largest pharmaceutical market in all of Latin America. Although still fragmented, this market had begun to coalesce around larger competitors. In this environment, it was important for Drogasil, Brazil’s third-largest pharmaceutical retailer, to position itself for growth.

As it started assessing the best path forward, the company engaged Goldman Sachs as its financial advisor. We helped Drogasil on its merger with Droga Raia, the nation’s fourth-largest retail pharmaceutical chain at the time.

While both companies originated in São Paulo, they had grown in different directions, with Raia expanding to Rio de Janeiro and the South, and Drogasil focusing its expansion towards the Southeast and Midwest of Brazil. Together, these areas comprise over 78 percent of the nation’s retail pharmacy market. A merger between the companies would create a true national leader.

With its local knowledge and wealth of experience in mergers and acquisitions, the investment banking team from Goldman Sachs São Paulo helped forge a merger of equals. The new enterprise, Raia Drogasil S.A., became Brazil’s leading retail pharmacy, with nearly 800 stores, 18,000 employees and a territory extending across nine states.

Goldman Sachs
São Paulo Drogasil Deal Team

left to right: Flavio Aidar, Fernanda Schahin, Marco Vianna, Cristiano Camargo

A Team Grows in São Paulo

Brazil, South America’s largest economy, represents an area of tremendous potential. Solid economic growth, the development of capital markets, the strong interest of international investors and local companies seeking to expand globally make it crucially important for Goldman Sachs. Because of this, Goldman Sachs has established a growing presence in Brazil, which enables us to provide clients — both onshore and offshore — with the products and services they need to achieve their objectives.

Goldman Sachs first established a presence in Brazil in 1995, focusing initially on establishing our mergers and acquisitions advisory business. Since then, we have made a series of significant commitments to building a strong presence in Brazil and to being a full-service provider, following Investment Banking with Equities and Fixed Income, Currency and Commodities market making, Investment Management and Global Investment Research capabilities. We received a local foreign exchange license in 2006, and officially launched Goldman Sachs do Brasil Banco Múltiplo S.A. in 2007. In 2008, we launched Asset Management and were granted our equities broker-dealer license. In 2009, we launched Private Wealth Management. Today, Goldman Sachs has approximately 240 professionals supporting our businesses based in São Paulo and nearly 600 professionals around the world focused more broadly on Latin America.

Our São Paulo office is a diversified provider of products and services, giving clients access to local expertise and the global reach of Goldman Sachs, including:

  • Investment Banking and Capital Markets
  • Market Making in Equities, Fixed Income, Currencies and Commodities
  • Investment Management for Institutions and High-Net-Worth Individuals
  • Investment Research

Focus on... the promise of growth markets

Alberto Ramos, head of Latin America Economics Research, Global Investment Research Division, discusses Brazil's economic progress over the past decade and what its future may hold.

Watch Video

Growth Markets: Insights and data on some of the world’s most dynamic and rapidly developing economies.

Watch Video

Goldman Sachs Brazil:
From foothold to full-service footprint in the heart of Latin America


Established a presence in Brazil, focusing on M&A


Received a local foreign exchange license


Launched Goldman Sachs do Brasil Banco Múltiplo S.A.


Launched Asset Management and were granted our equities broker-dealer license


Launched Private Wealth Management


Approximately 240 professionals based in São Paulo