The maturity we gained during this crisis will help us emerge stronger in 2021


Luis Sainz, Societe Generale Group Country Officer, Brazil, reviews lessons learned from 2020 and his outlook for Brazil in 2021.

“This year hasn’t been easy for any of us” was one of the most common sentences during the pandemic year of 2020 both in Brazil and worldwide. 

However, the number of things we were forced to learn about ourselves, about our ecosystem, could bring some light in this new year. Regarding the Brazilian economy, the very important spending and stimulus program done by the Brazilian Government in 2020 helped reduce the pandemic impact in our country. Gross domestic product (GDP) contraction in 2020 will end at -4.5% versus a -9.0% that was forecasted at the beginning of the crisis. This should bring a V-shaped recovery with a consensus GDP growth of 3.5% in 2021 in a base case scenario.

Our main strategies and objectives at Societe Generale Brazil will continue to be focused on serving locally the global clients of the Bank. Post-pandemic crisis, Brazil will continue to be the 9th largest economy in the world and will continue to represent one of the leading markets for our clients. Our ability to accompany their growth projects will give us an edge in 2021 as has been the case for the previous few years. Our coverage teams, product experts, sales & trading platform and support functions are fully integrated to provide a great customer experience. Looking at the recent private equity and infrastructure funds raising capital in Brazil, we believe there will be opportunities to support our clients in their external growth plans mainly in energy,  infrastructure and agribusiness – all areas of expertise for Societe Generale Brazil. After an unprecedented 2020 that modified — and challenged — all aspects of our professional and personal lives, I will focus more than ever on our human capital. We have gone through very rough times and people demonstrated resilience, professionalism, capacity to adapt and team spirit. It is not a coincidence as these are the core values we have been promoting for years at the Societe Generale Group level. 

Yes, 2020 was not easy for anybody, but finding the right balance for our “new normal” activity will be our key to succeed once again in 2021.