Banco do Brasil, a state-owned bank in Brazil, has signed a memorandum of understanding with no binding effect, with its Brazilian peer Banco Bradesco and Portugal's Banco Espirito Santo (BES) to establish a strategic partnership aiming at operating in the African continent.

The banks intend to take part in a financial holding company which would consolidate, in Africa, current operations of BES. The holding would coordinate future investments involving the acquisition of shareholdings in other banks as well as establishing its own operations in the African continent, said Banco do Brasil.

The three financial institutions consider that the partnership is important to support the internationalization of Brazilian and Portuguese companies and to assist the growing foreign trade with that continent.

The closing of the deal is subject to technical, legal and financials studies, satisfactory negotiation of definitive documents, and the compliance with applicable regulatory and legal procedures in both countries.