In Briefs, Business, Companies, News


The Generali Group, which owns the insurers Tranquilidade, Açoreana and Logo, is in advanced negotiations to buy a 10% share in Portugal’s Banco CTT and, at the same time, to sign a commercial agreement with the financial institution to distribute insurance according to Jornal de Negócios.


Portugal mutualist bank Banco Montepio has posted profits of €23.9 million to September. The results compare to the loss of €14.2 million posted like-for-like for 2021. An increase in financial margins (-€16 million), bank charges and a reduction in operational costs have all helped to explain the result. The bank also reduced staff numbers by 138 in 2022 and closed 82 branches since the last quarter of 2020.
Portugal’s central bank has given the green light to the winding up of Efisa which was founded 25 years ago. The decision was made after two failed attempts to sell the financial institution managed by a State entity following the nationalisation of failed bank BPN in 2008. The bank will close within one year. Although the bank did have potential buyers, the sales were never authorised by the regulators. Banco Efisa has a positive net balance of €30 million and last year its net annual profits were €3.6 million. Nevertheless, in previous years it accumulated losses of €15 million between 2017 and 2020.


The Porto-based startup Smartex (team pictured) has raised €25 million in a series A investment one year after having won the Pitch Prize for the Best Idea at Web Summit. The investment round will be used to strengthen its team, develop production and accelerate its geographical expansion. The Series A round was led by venture capital companies Lightspeed Venture Partners in the US and the studio Build Collective from Tony Fadell who is considered the father of the ‘iPod’. Other financial support came from H&M and Kering (owner of Gucci and Balenciaga), as well as the Portuguese VC Faber. The startup has been developing devices that use cameras to capture images of fabrics as soon as they leave the looms. The images are analysed by AI software enabling a reduction in offcuts and fabrics with defects.


Greenvolt, a Portuguese renewables company led by João Manso Neto, is pondering building two new biomass power stations in Portugal. “We will make all necessary efforts to present a project for new biomass power stations”, said Manso Neto at the unveiling of the company’s new brand logo on Thursday in Lisbon. A recent decree-law foresees financial incentives for power stations that contribute towards reducing the incidences of forest fires which have been plaguing Portugal over the past 20 years. “I’m not saying we’ll win (the incentives), but we’ve got clear ideas where these biomass facilities should be located: close to areas where there is a lot of biomass, particularly the Algarve serras and in the north of the country”.