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Meirelles is putting JBS’ house in order

It is relatively easy to understand why Joesley Batista has handed Henrique Meirelles such a thorny task. JBS has been criticized for having received more than R$ 5 billion in loans from the National Bank for Economic and Social Development, BNDES, making the bank its main individual shareholder, with a 30.4% stake.

An inquiry into possible bias by BNDES in a bond issue was opened by Brazil’s Federal Public Prosecutor in Rio de Janeiro, in February last year - JBS denies the allegations.

At the same time, the company's debt - at around R$ 10 billion - and lack of governance mechanisms, have caused its shares to collapse, although the company has quadrupled in size since its initial public offering in March 2007. Since then, JBS shares have gained just 3%, compared to the Ibovespa index average of 54%.

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