Helmut Bossert speaks about the state of IR in Brazil, spending eight years at Natura and his new venture

Natura’s former head of IR, Helmut Bossert, has left the company to start his own IR consultancy in Brazil.

Bossert spent eight years at the company, during which time Natura was among the winners every year at the IR Magazine Brazil Awards, claiming awards for best corporate sustainability and best corporate governance.

On the topic of corporate governance, Bossert tells IR magazine that ‘it is the practice, not the written rules that make a company run at a high corporate governance level.’

Prior to working for Natura, Bossert spent time at Unibanco Investment Bank (now Itaú) and Sabesp. Looking back on his 20 years in the sector, he recalls his first experience in New York in the early 1990s, visiting an asset manager on Park Avenue: ‘He invited me to sit down on a nice leather sofa and asked me, What the hell are you doing here?

The situation is very different now, with Bossert saying he encounters only friends wherever he goes in the city.

State of IR in Brazil

Bossert is very vocal on the state of IR in Brazil. ‘Despite the high number of investor relations officers or managers we have in Brazil – and this has improved in the last eight years – we are still far from what is really required of IR by analysts and portfolio managers across the world,’ he says.

While accepting that Brazil still has a way to go in developing IR, Bossert also notes that ‘companies are improving and learning about the advantage of having high-level IR professionals.’

On the decision to leave Natura, he says: ‘My decision was based on the opportunity I see here in Brazil and in other countries in the region.’ He adds that he aims ‘to help companies to come to the capital market and improve the economy.’

When asked where he sees himself in five years time, Bossert responds: ‘Winning awards for being the best IR consultant!’

Fabio Cefaly confirms that he has replaced Bossert as the new head of IR for Natura.