Sao Pãulo, Brazil
The beginnings: In 1905, Antonio Pereira Ignacio established the Fabrica de Oleos de Santa Helena. In 1918 he expanded his business ventures and the enterprise was re-named Sociedade Anonyma Fabrica Votorantim. By 1923, it had become the largest textile producers in Sao Paulo. The founder Antonio Pereira Ignacio and his son-in-law José Ermírio de Moraes worked together and brought the small textile firm to new heights. By the end of the 1950’s, the Group comprised 46 companies. The second generation: By the 1950’s, the Group began producing aluminium, hydroelectric power as well as refining sugar. In the 1970’s and 80’s, the Group entered into zinc and nickel mining and smelting, as well as plastics and film wrapping.
In 1988 the Group acquired Celpav, its first pulp and paper plant. In 1989, it created Citrovita, the Groups first concentrated orange juice plant. The third generation: In the early 1990’s, recognizing that the financial sector was counter-cyclical to industrial activity, the Group entered this sector through Banco Votorantim, diversifying cash flow and opening a new growth avenue. In spite of the volatility and stagnant growth of the Brazilian economy in the past decades, the Group has grown at an annual rate of 7%.
The fourth generation: Within the structural context of the Family Council, with the arrival of a larger number of 4th generation members, the Group has instituted a series of educational and professional development programs to provide the necessary skills for a successful career – whether in or out of the family business.