(Bloomberg) Barclays Natrual Resource Investments is buying a stake in Brazil’s Cia. Positiva de Energia SA a Rio de Janeiro-based electricity start-up created to develop electricity and power generation projects founded by Eike Batista.
Barclays Plc’s natural resources private-equity unit is making its first investment in Brazil at a time when cheaper asset prices are enticing foreign funds.
Barclays Natural Resource Investments, as the unit is known, is buying a stake in Cia. Positiva de Energia SA, a Rio de Janeiro-based electricity start-up created to develop electricity and power generation projects that was founded by former executives who worked under ex-billionaire Eike Batista, according to a statement by the Brazilian company on Tuesday. The London-based bank declined to provide terms of the deal.
With Brazil heading to its biggest economic contraction since 1990 and the central bank boosting borrowing costs to contain inflation, international funds are bargain hunting in Latin America’s largest economy. Cerberus Capital Management LP, the investment firm with about $25 billion under management, last month said it’s eyeing an initial acquisition in the country while Blackstone Group LP and Brookfield Asset Management Inc. seek to expand commercial property purchases.
BNRI, as Barclays’s division founded in 2006 is known, has more than $3.5 billion invested in 30 portfolio companies globally, the statement said. The fund generally commits between $50 million to $200 million to each management team to invest and has staff working out of London, New York and Doha, according to BNRI’s website.
Set up in 2014, Positiva focuses on electricity trading and is considering projects built from scratch, or acquisitions of assets in an advanced stage of development, according to its website. The company’s partners include Flavio Godinho, who held several positions including top legal adviser at some of Batista’s companies, and Eduardo Karrer, an ex-chief executive of Eneva SA, the utility taken public by the entrepreneur in 2007.
“Backing Positiva is directly in line with BNRI’s strategy of identifying and backing ‘best-in-class’ teams in their area of expertise,” Jason Siegel, a New York-based vice president at Barclay’s private equity business, said in the statement.