World’s Best Private Banks 2023: Latin America

Global Finance names the best private banks in Latin America.

The rise of the middle class investor has pushed down private banking’s total share of assets under management (AUM) in Latin America; but despite this and the effects of the pandemic, wealth has continued to grow. Market gains sent family wealth soaring, and growth in family offices across the region has also been robust.

Brazil and Mexico have the greatest number of high net worth individuals (HNWIs) in the region, followed by Chile, Colombia, Peru and Argentina, according to a report by consultants Mordor Intelligence. Alternative investments are booming, and private equity is popular among wealthy investors. “Many people are seeking diversification by investing in foreign markets, particularly in the US,” according to Mordor. The region’s tech strength is minting new millionaires and new investment options. Venture capital is playing a strong role in Brazil, and Mexican family offices are investing 4.4% of their AUM in venture capital, Mordor reports.


BTG Pactual Wealth Management

Based in Brazil, the largest economy in Latin America—with 216 million people, GDP of $1.9 trillion and GDP per capita of $8,860—BTG Pactual recorded impressive growth across its wealth management desks in 2021. AUM grew 36.1% to $48.4 billion; while net new money (NNM) reached $12.3 billion, increasing 138%. In Brazil alone, BTG’s AUM grew 47.5% over 2020, NNM figures shot up 158% over the prior year. Total revenues hit $150.8 million, representing 25.1% growth over 2020, in part due to innovative investment offerings for wealthy clients, including local real estate funds and new alternative-investment options, supported by a comprehensive digital platform.

These accomplishments were possible due to BTG Pactual’s deep understanding of client needs, its strength in capital markets and M&A, and continuous investment in hiring the best professionals for both ultrahigh net worth and HNW segments—client-facing staff having grown 30.4% since 2020. BTG Campus, an internal training platform launched in 2021, provides a range of education services, including onboarding programs for wealth management teams.



Santander Private Banking (SPB) serves more than 48,000 clients in Latin America through local banks as well as international platforms in Miami, the Bahamas and elsewhere. In March 2021, the private banking unit in Miami acquired a $4.3 billion portfolio from Indosuez Wealth Management.

SPB’s goal is to embed sustainability in growth strategy and decision making. Santander provides clients with tailor-made portfolio reviews with qualitative and quantitative indicators showing impact; alignment with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals; and performance according to the bank’s own environmental, social and governance (ESG) methodology. Since 2020, bankers and advisers have received internal training from ESG teams and now have the opportunity to obtain a corporate certificate from the International Association for Sustainable Economy.


Bradesco Private Bank

Bradesco Private Bank has seen 104% growth in AUM over the past five years, in part through the strength of its digital initiatives. Today’s partnership with Brazilian startup Smartbrain began when Bradesco gave two employees—one from the private bank and one from its innovation department, Inovabra—four months to brainstorm new benchmarks and product opportunities. The Smartbrain platform that emerged aggregates a client’s liquid and illiquid assets so the bank can act holistically when advising wealthy individuals and families.

Bradesco Private Bank is educating young wealth through a strategic front aimed at serving the Y, Z and Alpha generations. Bradesco Private also engages focus groups for innovative finance ideas as they arise, such as cryptocurrencies, central bank digital currencies and the metaverse, to keep clients up to date on fresh innovations.