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Banco Bradesco: Brazil Mega Bank

February 4, 2016

Banco Bradesco SA was founded on March 10, 1943, by Amador Aquiar and is headquartered in Osasco, Brazil. It offers a broad array of banking and financial products and services. Banco Bradesco operates through two segments namely: Banking, and Insurance, Pension & Capitalization Bonds.

It accepts various deposit products, such as demand deposits, time deposits, checking accounts, savings accounts, interbank deposits from financial institutions, and accounts for salary purposes. The bank also offers loans comprising short-term loans, vehicle financing, overdraft loans on checking accounts, revolving credit facilities, and traditional term loans to consumers.

Banco Bradesco also provides real estate financing services; microcredit to low-income individuals and small companies; BNDES onlending; short-term loans, working capital loans, guaranteed check accounts and corporate overdraft loans, discounting trade receivables, promissory notes, checks, credit card and supplier receivables, financing for purchase and sale of goods and services, corporate real estate financing, investment lines for acquisition of assets and machinery, and guarantees; and rural loans among other products and services.

As of December 31, 2014, the company operated through a network of 4,659 branches, 4,631 service centers and electronic in-company service centers, and 31,089 ATMs in Brazil; and 2 branches internationally.

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Westpac Banking Group: Australia’s First & Oldest Bank

February 1, 2016

Westpac Banking Group holds the distinction of being the first and oldest bank in Australia. The bank was established as the Bank of New South Wales in 1817 under a charter of incorporation provided by Governor Lachlan Macquarie. Through the years the company had its highs and lows like in 1821 when it was discovered that the bank’s Chief Cashier had stolen half its subscribed capital, none of which was ever recovered.

The gold fever in 1851 triggered the bank’s major expansion. By 1861 it had expanded from a single office in Sydney to a network of 37 branches. The Bank of New South Wales changed its name to Westpac Banking Corporation in October 1982 following the acquisition of the Commercial Bank of Australia.

Under the leadership of Robert Joss, Westpac from 1993 to 1999, executed a major rejuvenation program and then began a number of acquisitions in Australia and New Zealand to expand its retail footprint in markets where it did not have a strong presence.

Westpac merged with St. George Bank Limited, in 2008, producing a much bigger multi-brand Group. The effective date of the merger was December 1, 2008. On March 1, 2010, The Westpac Group commenced operating as a single authorized deposit-taking institution (ADI), and the legal entity St. George Bank Limited was deregistered. From that date St. George Bank became an operating division within The Westpac Group.

Today, Westpac has 5 key customer facing divisions serving approximately 13 million customers.

On June 10, 2015, the banking group announced a new, simplified operating structure.  The structure better aligns its business with key customer segments with the 5 key divisions including: Consumer Bank, Commercial and Business Bank, BT Financial Group, Westpac Institutional Bank and Westpac New Zealand.

Under this structure, Westpac retains it portfolio of brands including Westpac, St. George, Bank of Melbourne, BankSA and RAMS. These brands will operate under the Consumer Bank and Commercial and Business Bank divisions.

Westpac has more than 36,000 employees and generates sales in excess of $35 billion.

Rosneft: Russian Oil Giant

January 28, 2016

Rosneft was founded in 1993 and is headquartered in the Balchug district of Moscow near the Kremlin, across the Moskva River. The integrated oil company is majority owned by the Russian government. After purchasing the assets of former oil giant Yukos at state-run auctions, Rosneft became the leading extraction and refinement company in Russia. In March 2013, Rosneft became the largest publicly traded oil company after buying TNK-BP.

Rosneft is 75.16 percent owned by the Russian government, 19.75 percent of the company is owned by BP, a British multinational oil and gas company headquartered in London, United Kingdom and 5 percent of the shares are in free float.

Rosneft does oil and gas exploration and production activities on Sakhalin Island, Siberia, Timan-Pechora field and in southern Russia, including Chechnya. It owns and operates two refineries. The refinery in Tuapse, on the Black Sea, focuses on refining high-gravity oil from western Siberia. Another plant in Komsomolsk-o-Amur is the easternmost refinery in Russia.

As of 2014 it had around 106,000 employees on revenue of $91.72 billion.

NTT: Japan’s Nippon Telegram & Telephone

January 25, 2016

Nippon Telegram & Telephone commonly known as NTT was founded on August 1, 1952, as Nippon Telegram and Telephone Public Corporation as a monopoly and owned by the Japanese government. To bring about competition in the telecom market it was privatized in 1985. NTT, at that time made the largest stock offing at $36.8 billion in 1987.

NTT is headquartered in Tokyo, Japan and is one of the largest corporation in the world. Together with its subsidiaries, NTT provides fixed and mobile voice related services, IP/packet communication services, telecommunications equipment, and system integration and other telecommunications-related services in Japan and worldwide.

The company operates through five segments: Regional Communications Business, Long Distance and International Communications Business, Mobile Communications Business, Data Communications Business, and Other Businesses.

NTT provides regional communications services, including intra-prefectural communications and related ancillary services; long distance and international communication services, such as inter-prefectural communications, international communications, solution business, and related services. It provides mobile communications services, including mobile phone services and related services. Is also provides data communications services, such as system integration, network system services, and other.

The company also offers financial services, such as issuing leases and credit cards; real estate services, including building rentals and apartment sales. It provides systems development service and construction-related services, such as the design, construction and maintenance of buildings. Aside from this, NTT engages in strategic planning, designing, installing, and operating data communications systems and computer network-based informations systems, as well as providing IT services.

As of March 31, 2015, it had 18,716,000 FTTH service subscriptions; 1,219,000 ADSL service subscriptions; 24,344,000 fixed-line telephone service and ISDN service subscription; 11,586,000 ISP service subscriptions; and 66,595,000 mobile broadband and voice communication subscribers.

In late 2010, NTT’s Japan-to-US transpacific network reached 400 Gbit/s. In August 2011, its network capacity was expanded to 500 Gbits/s.

NTT has around 239,756 employees and annual sales in excess of $100 billion.

Anheuser-Busch InBev: World’s Largest Brewer

January 21, 2016

Anheuser-Busch InBev  (AB InBev) is headquartered in Leuven, Belgium. The company has around 155,000 employees worldwide with annual revenue of $47 billion in 2014. AB InBev was formed through successive mergers of three international brewing companies: Interbrew from Belgium, AmBev from Brazil, and Anheuser-Busch from the United States. AB InBev has a 25 percent share of the global market and is the world’s largest brewer.

The company has 16 brands that individually generate over $1 billion annually in revenue, coming out of its portfolio of over 200 brands. Among the global brands in the portfolio include Budweiser, Corona and Stella Artois, international brands Beck’s, Hoegaarden and Leffe and local brands like Bud Light, Skol, Brahma, Antarctica, Quilmes, Victoria, Modelo Especial, Michelob Ultra, Harbin, Sedrin, Klinskoye, Sibirskaya Korona, Chernigivske and Jupiler.

After the integration of Saint Louis, Missouri-based Anheuser-Busch in 2008, the company began reporting its financial results in US dollars.

AB InBev has a primary listing on Euronext Brussels and is a constituent of the Euro Stoxx 50 index. It has a secondary listing on the New York Stock Exchange.

Prudential Plc: British Insurance Giant

January 18, 2016

Prudential Plc was founded on May 30, 1848, in Hatton Garden, London, United Kingdom. It was then called The Prudential Mutual Assurance Investment and Loan Association, offering loans to professionals and working people.

The company began selling in 1854, the relatively new concept of industrial branch insurance policies to the working class population for premium as low as one penny through agents acting as door to door salesmen. The group of premium collection agents was for many years identified with Prudential as the “Man from Pru”.

Today, Prudential Plc operates as a holding company with interest in providing insurance and financial services. The company as an international financial services group with its principal operation in Asia, the US, and the United Kingdom, offers retail financial products and services and asset management services throughout these territories. Its retail financial products and services principally include life insurance, pensions and annuities, as well as collective investments schemes.

Prudential operates through the following business units: Prudential Corp. Asia, Jackson National Life Insurance Co., Prudential UK and M&G. The Prudential Corp. Asia business unit comprises its life insurance operations in Asia and its asset management business. The Jackson National Life Insurance Co. business unit provides retirement savings and income solutions and also provides total annuities, variable and fixed index annuities in the US. The Prudential UK business unit is engaged in the life insurance and pension businesses. The M&G business unit is engaged in the UK and European fund management business.

Prudential’s largest division is Prudential Corp. Asia which has more than 13 million customers throughout 12 Asian markets and is top-three provider of life insurance in Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, the Philippines and Vietnam. Its Prudential UK division has approximately 7 million customers and is a leading provider of life insurance and pensions in the UK.

Prudential Plc is headquartered in London and has around 23,915 employees and sales of around $99 billion.

China Merchants Bank: Chinese Mega Regional Bank

January 14, 2016

China is always in the news primarily because of its ever growing economic power and it’s not only due to manufacturing, financing is also important and one of the banks that has played a big role in this area is China Merchants Bank.

China Merchants Bank is headquartered in Shenzhen, China and was founded on April 8, 1987. The bank has 75,109 employees and generates annual sales in excess of $45 billion.

China Merchants Bank Co. Ltd. engages in the provision of corporate and retail banking products and services, conducting treasury business, the provision of asset management and trustee services and other financial services.

The bank’s Wholesale Banking segment provides financial services to corporations and institutions which include lending and deposit taking activities, project and structured finance products, syndicated loans, cash management, investment advice, treasury business and other investment service.

Its Retail Banking segment provides financial services to retail customers which include lending and deposit taking activities, credit card facilities and investment services.  The bank’s Treasury Business segment covers interbank and capital market activities and proprietary trading. Its Other segment includes insurance underwriting, insurance agency, securities and future brokerage services, investment properties and interest in associates.