Report: Banco Bradesco Buys Mexico’s Ictineo to Expand Outside Brazil

banco bradesco, ictineo, banking, acquisition

Aiming to start offering digital banking in Mexico, Brazil’s Bradescard, a subsidiary of Banco Bradesco, has reportedly agreed to acquire Mexico’s Ictineo Plataforma. 

Bradesco has had a financing company in Mexico for 12 years, but this will be its first retail banking venture outside Brazil, according to a Thursday (Aug. 25) Reuters report.

“We can now have a digital bank and aim for a larger market share in a relevant market like Mexico,” Bradesco CEO Octavio de Lazari said, per the report. 

With the acquisition, the Brazilian company aims to offer digital accounts, payroll loans and investment accounts. In the future, it plans to add auto loans and mortgages and increase the number of credit cards it issues — above the 3 million of its private-label cards already offered by Mexican retailers. 

PYMNTS’ research has found that Mexico is among the most digital-forward economies. According to “The 2022 Global Digital Shopping Index: Mexico Edition,” a PYMNTS and Cybersource collaboration, while there are still payments friction issues, Mexico’s merchants are all-in on smartphone-assisted shopping. 

Read more: The Data Point: 72% of Mexico’s Merchants Embrace Mobile Phones In-Store 

Compared to other countries included in the report, PYMNTS found that “among the 34 features we study, merchants in Mexico were more likely than the average to offer every single one of them — even those that many of their shoppers do not use.” 

Digital banking, too, has been expanding across Latin America, with a growing number of financial institutions and digital- and mobile-only FinTechs vying for consumer’s attention, as reported in the “Digitizing Payments in Latin America Playbook,” a PYMNTS and Kushki collaboration. 

Learn more: How 2021’s Digital Coming of Age Changed the Latin American Banking Space for Good 

Brazil’s five largest banks — Bradesco among them — have been taking steps to innovate their digital features to keep pace with these emerging digital-first challengers, Brad Liebmann, CEO and founder of mobile-only Brazilian financial institution, said in the report.