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What can companies do to ensure that a culture of compliance takes hold in Brazil?

Exiger’s Latin America experts Laura Tulchin and Daniel R. Alonso weigh inCompliance continues to gain steam in Brazil. The country is implementing new regulations stemming from a landmark 2013 anti-bribery legislation (the Clean Companies Act), and is still reeling from the never-ending revelations from the Lava Jato investigation, which stands to be the world’s largest ever corruption scheme, with identified kickbacks and bribes totaling over $10 billion. As the fallout of Lava Jato shows no sign of letting up (with new tapes coming to light in just the past few weeks that directly implicate the current president), Brazilian companies are showing an active interest in instituting robust compliance programs as a way to both comply with regulation and to avoid being the target of the next Lava Jato. These companies are looking for expertise and guidance from sources with experience. On May 11, Exiger participated in a panel on Compliance and Anticorruption at the World Trade Centre in São Paulo, Brazil with the Brazilian law firm Kourey Loupes Advogados (KLA) and Intralinks, the data management software provider. With a panel of five experts – including Exiger Managing Director Daniel R. Alonso, a leading anti-corruption lawyer, and two compliance representatives in the private sector – and over 70 professionals in attendance from across the private sector, the event demonstrated how in-demand compliance knowledge has become in Brazil. Spanish/Portuguese speaker and Exiger’s Associate Director Laura Tulchin moderated the panel. As a resident of Brazil until 2013, Tulchin remarked on the incredible rise of compliance in the past few years. “With four successive years of political and economic crises, Brazilians are increasingly turning to robust compliance programs and strong internal investigations practices as a means to turn the page on Lava Jato, a struggling economy and political instability. ‘Compliance’ is still a relatively new word in the Brazilian corporate vocabulary, but companies and financial institutions have recognized just how critical a role they play in moving the country forward. With the scope of Lava Jato ever greater and new corruption allegations coming to light nearly every day, Brazil is at a crossroads. To truly turn the page on corruption, Brazilian companies need to ensure that they’ve: Implemented robust policies and procedures, performed vigorous risk assessments, and have a strong program of continuous due diligence;Create a corporate culture that values compliance as a central to any company’s success; and,In the case that wrongdoing does occur, bring in investigative teams in a timely manner to detect the problem and take appropriate action before it balloons.”Tulchin reported back with her key takeaways from the May 11 event: Compliance Programs and Monitorships: What can LatAm learn from the U.S.? The speakers presented on the history of compliance and monitorships in the U.S. and the rapid growth of the field in Brazil in the past few years. Exiger’s Daniel R. Alonso offered insight on monitorships in the United States, speaking from decades of experience in the field of financial crime, including his current role as chair of Exiger’s Integrity Forum. He spoke about the role of monitorships in Deferred Prosecution Agreements in the U.S. and offered tips on what makes a monitorship a success.With three major Brazilian companies now under U.S court-imposed monitorships, including major aircraft manufacturer Embraer, whose Chief Compliance Officer also spoke on the panel, the audience showed particular interest in how monitorships work and the potential for application by Brazilian authorities.Isabel Franco of KLA spoke about the history of compliance in the private sector more generally, while compliance officers in two major Brazilian firms spoke about their efforts to embed a culture of compliance in corporate environments through policies and procedures, robust governance and a strong tone from the top.Claudio Yamashita from Intralinks spoke about how secure data sharing channels can be instrumental to ensuring that compliance is known and understood by all employees.Maturing Compliance Programs: Tech-enabled Solutions for Cost-Effective Sustainability Tulchin moderated a lively panelist roundtable that focused on what it will take to embed and foster a culture of compliance in Brazil’s corporate and financial sector. The panelists shared experiences on the practical steps companies can take to establish best practices in reporting, training, transparency and governance. Tulchin said that companies in Brazil are seeking guidance and expertise in developing best practice compliance standards that are both sustainable and cost effective. The stringency of Brazil’s Clean Companies Act, compounded by the ever-growing force of the Lava Jato scandal, have made it clear to local corporates just how important a strong compliance program is.Exiger’s participation in the panel offered attendees an opportunity to hear about the company’s global expertise in FCPA work, monitorships and implementing an end-to-end compliance program. With its experience in monitorships, its specialized compliance expertise and its ground-breaking automated third-party due diligence tool, Exiger Insight3PM, Exiger is particularly suited to meet the advisory and diligence demands of a Brazilian corporate landscape that is eager to develop mature compliance programs.

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