by Dub Newman, Head of Global Treasury Sales, Bank of America Merrill Lynch
While there is a great deal of talk about the emergence of Asia as the world’s new economic powerhouse, the potential and opportunity in another region, Latin America, is often overlooked. In my position as Head of Global Treasury Sales at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, I travel extensively, and there are few places in the world where I experience the same energy and positivity as I do in countries such as Brazil and Chile. As the articles in this Guide illustrate, Latin America brings considerable opportunity for domestic and foreign multinational companies seeking growth and increased profitability. The region’s wealth of natural resources, rising income levels and strong commitment to sustainable economic development are just some examples of why it is becoming, and should continue to be, an important part of multinational corporations’ growth strategy.
At Bank of America Merrill Lynch, we recognise both the potential opportunities that exist in Latin America, and the variety of ways in which our services can benefit companies doing business there. Bank of America Merrill Lynch is well-recognised as a key player in the US, with a host of recent awards including TMI’s 2010 award for Cash Management and Financial Supply Chain Management in North America. The United States is currently the primary trading partner for many Latin America corporates, so we are able to bring our expertise both to local companies looking outwards, and North American firms trading with, or seeking to expand their presence in the region.
Furthermore, as these corporations look further afield, into EMEA and Asia, they can leverage our global footprint and benefit from cohesive services based on a common platform. Expanding into new regions can be daunting for any organisation, with a new and often bewildering array of tax, regulatory and cultural challenges to overcome. By being able to work with a single banking partner that has a sound appreciation of a client’s business, and in-depth local market knowledge, these concerns can be alleviated considerably. At Bank of America Merrill Lynch, not only do we support our clients’ regional requirements across our global footprint, but we can connect their regional activities into a co-ordinated global banking strategy.Our regional presence, particularly in Brazil and Chile, is complemented by our in-house knowledge of, and expertise within, the Latin American market. As a leading provider of trade services, we help our clients to do business more easily at a lower risk. In addition, with considerable experience in supporting energy, power and mining companies, and their key customers, we have the ability to deliver significant value. Across all industries, we are witnessing, and contributing to, an evolution of companies’ financial infrastructure. For example, countries such as Uruguay, Costa Rica and Panama, with their increasingly open regulatory environment, skilled workforce and cost-effectiveness are proving attractive locations for shared service centres (SSCs). At Bank of America Merrill Lynch, we have a great deal of experience in supporting clients in establishing highly efficient, automated financial processes and centralisation of cash and treasury management functions.