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A BRAZILIAN VISION OF ITS CURRENT CHALLENGES

              The objective of this article is to present some important points about the major challenges faced by Brazilian executives including the need to complete against their Brazilian and international peers. In addition, Brazilian companies are facing new challenges under the current political situation due to the new second term economic team recently appointed by new President .

              One of the first challenges for Brazilian companies is one of "internal sustainability". During a recent lecture given by Mrs. Cibele Laudete-Sustentability Manager of FLEURY Laboratory at Business Administration Week at FMU University (S.Paulo) I questioned the speaker about people who confuse this concept with regard to "Corporate Sustainability" or the ability of a company to compete without relying on financial institutions for expensive support. Under the concept of internal sustainability often referred to as a Triple Bottom Line approach where companies consider a high-level, strategy composed of Economic, Social and Environmental aspects. Under this approach it is important that companies and executives understand the importance of maintenance and continuity of the company, while respecting the social aspects of Employees, Customers, Suppliers and the surrounding community as well as taking care of the environment. In Brazil companies must consider their "ecological footprint"; we should use natural resources, but leave nature in a better condition then when we found it.

              Another strategic issue is competitiveness. I attended a workshop about "Capital Markets and the Capitalization Process at Enterprises" at The São Paulo State Federation of Manufacturing Companies-FIESP. A point highlighted during the workshop by a top leader of FIESP, was deindustrialization, a phenomenon also occurring in the U.S. which President Obama has called reindustrialization. This process acknowledges that many companies have "escapedâ? to China causing many jobs to leave Brazil. This deindustrialization has reduced prices but has also reduced wages. Lower wages in Brazil has forced companies to sometimes lower the quality of their goods and services; yet, companies need to invest in quality products, added value services through the purchase of  modern equipment and techniques because such concepts add value and increase productivity.

              Regarding internal competitiveness the government has not solved The BRAZIL COST problems involving the bottlenecks caused by mis allocation of organizational resources created by Production Clusters or Production Protected Areas which implement the improvements needed to achieve economies of scale gains.

              Finally, I point out the issue related to the maintenance and growth of enterprises and their ability to add value. Adding value must be a company's main objective so that the customer realizes that "value" is more than just the price paid and considers quality of the product purchased or the service rendered, as well as aspects of after-sales services. Adding value must also occur at the employee level too, going beyond their direct and indirect remuneration by providing career plans which create the satisfaction of being listened to and becoming proud to be "part of the team" or "to wear the Company shirt". 

               Adding value must also occur at a societal level. For example, what happens when a company closes it doors?  As was pointed out in the workshop I attended Top Management realized that another company would be organized to occupy the space; no one would miss the former company. As a result the Company changed its product line. It stopped producing rubber gloves and started manufacturing orthopedic prostheses.  Of course adding value should include an Owner's perspective that is to say a perspective which goes beyond the tangible, expected return to one where return includes the owner's ability to contribute to economic stability.

              I know that there are many other issues to consider, such as those related to Corporate Governance, Technological Innovation, Sources of Funds for Investments and Modernization, but the issues mentioned above should be the primary issues for analysis by readers interested in the development of Brazil. Without considering the issues discussed above Brazil may no longer be a country of the future or worthy of being a member of the emerging block of countries called BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India and China) a term first used by Jim O'Neill   (Former Goldman Sachs executive).

São Paulo (Brazil), May, 2015.

Prof.Luiz Roberto Nascimento, MFP, RFS - CEDEPPE

Specialization in Finance ICES / CRA-MG & UFMG-1984

ADESG / BH-1985 / Extension Courses ESG (WarSchool)1987/88/1990

Controllership Committee Director ANEFAC ( www.anefac.com.br )

CFO / Ethics Committee AAFM / BRAZIL ( www.aafmbrazil.com )

VP Finance & Ethics Committee Chairman www.institutopalestrante.org.br

Consultant CEDEPPE ( www.financeiro.cedeppe.com.br )


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