Alejandro Betancourt López
|Alejandro Betancourt López|
|Alma mater||Suffolk University of Massachusetts|
|Occupation||Chairman and CEO of Derwick Associates
President of Hawkers
|Spouse(s)||Andreína Rojas (m. 2012)|
Alejandro Betancourt López (born 1980) is a Venezuelan businessman. He is the leader of the international investment group O'Hara Administration and serves as Chairman and CEO of Derwick Associates, an engineering, procurement and construction company. Betancourt is also a director of Pacific Exploration & Production Corporation, a publicly held Canadian company and a leading explorer and producer of natural gas and crude oil which operates in various Latin American countries. Betancourt controls 19.95% of Pacific Exploration & Production. He is also president of Hawkers, a Spanish sunglasses company.
He belongs to a wealthy and well-known family of Caracas, linked to the local oligarchy that dates back to his great grandfather, Hermógenes López, as 22nd president of the Republic of Venezuela. President López was one of the persons responsible for bringing electricity to Valencia, at the time the most important state of Venezuela.
Betancourt has a double major in Economics and Business Administration from the Suffolk University of Massachusetts, United States. He started his career in a company specializing in the energy sector and in the exploration, production and trade oil and its derivatives, with presence in the U.S., Europe, Middle East, South America and Africa. He has served as business manager for Latin America. He later worked in Guruceaga Group, a company dedicated to international trade in goods, finance, real estate and farm, of which he was manager of new business; and BGB Energy, a company that was responsible for representing, in joint venture with the old GESCA GAS in Venezuela, international corporation Kawasaki Heavy Industries. As chief executive of BGB Energy, he participated in the Proyecto de interconexión Centro Occidente (ICO) of Venezuela. And also in a workshop planning for packaging related to power generation equipment.
He is co-founder, along with Pedro Trebbau López, of Derwick Associates Corp., a Venezuelan company dedicated to the energy sector. He has also co-founded eponymous companies in Panama, the United States, Spain, and Barbados.
In August 2015 Betancourt became director and member of the board of Pacific Exploration & Production Corporation.
In June 2015 the BDK Financial Group, of which Alejandro Betancourt is a major shareholder, inaugurated the Banque de Dakar headquarters in Senegal. The objective of the financial group is to offer banking services in Frech-speaking Africa. In March 2016 the group appointed Alfredo Sáenz Abad as president of the bank.
Since it started operations in 2003,  the company has obtained eleven contracts for the construction of power plants in Venezuela; five contracts awarded by Electricidad de Caracas (to join Corpoelec in December 2011), five Petroleos de Venezuela SA (PDVSA negotiated with Bariven, a PDVSA division), and one by Corporación Venezolana de Guayana (CVG).
In January 2014, the business section of the Spanish daily ABC published an interview in which Alejandro Betancourt explained his strategy of turning Derwick into a major technology provider for Latin America.
Pacific Exploration & Production
In May 2015, O'Hara Administration, an international investment group led by Alejandro Betancourt, became the largest shareholder of the petroleum company Pacific Exploration & Production Corporation by controlling 19.5 percent of its shares.
In June 2015, Betancourt resisted a takeover bid by Alfa SAB and Harbour Energy Ltd.
By the end of August 2015 Betancourt increased his control over the shares of Pacific to 19.95% and was appointed director and member of the board. Betancourt publicly shared plans to expand the operations of the company and enter new markets to grow.
Betancourt leads the O’Hara administration group of international investors. The other key executive of the group as porfolio manager and director is Orlando J. Alvarado.
The group currently holds 19.95% of Pacific Exploration & Production Corporation shares. In August 2016, O’Hara together with the Mexican investor Fernando Chico Pardo presented a restructuring bid for Pacific worth $575 million.
In October 2016 O’Hara together with the founders of the Spanish social network Tuenti, Felix Ruiz and Hugo Arévalo led a financing round of 50 million euros for the Spanish sunglasses startup company Hawkers. In November 2016 Hawkers appointed Alejandro Betancourt as its new president.
In December 2013, Betancourt received the award issued by the Spanish magazine Capital for the "best technological initiative in Latin-America". The award recognized the construction of Derwick's TTC (Turbine Technology Center), which is located in an industrial area of Guácara, Carabobo State in Venezuela, measuring 10.000m2, with garages, offices and a training facility.
Controversies and legal disputes
Thor Leonardo Halvorssen Mendoza, a human rights lawyer, alleged defamation and sued Derwick and Betancourt. Halvorssen also claimed they paid a $50,000,000 bribe to Diosdado Cabello, Speaker of the House of the Venezuelan National Assembly.
- Willis, Andrew; Kurmanaev, Anatoly; Kary, Tiffany (21 August 2015). "Man Who Spoiled Pacific Rubiales Oil Deal Has a Growth Plan". Bloomberg News. Retrieved 28 October 2015.
- (in Spanish) "Alejandro Betancourt: «Venezuela tiene mucho potencial si la entiendes»", ABC January 17, 2014. ABC. Accessed 13 July 2014.
- "Él es el rey venezolano de las gafas de sol de Elche". ELMUNDO (in Spanish). Retrieved 2016-12-27.
- (in Spanish) "Breve historia del sistema eléctrico venezolano". VIQUEIRA LANDA, Jacinto. (1975). Redes Eléctricas.
- Armengol, Luis. "Venezuela tendrá uno de los centros más innovadores de América del sur". Innovaspain. Retrieved 25 June 2014.
- "Alejandro Betancourt, CEO Derwick". Alejandro Betancourt. Retrieved 2 July 2015.
- "Proyecto Interconexión Centro Occidente (ICO)". PDVSA. Retrieved 26 June 2014.
- "Kawasaki cree en Venezuela". Portafolio de Inversiones.
- Navas, José Antonio (28 September 2015). "Alberto Cortina y Alex Betancourt ultiman la compra del Versus Bank en Costa de Marfil" (in Spanish). El Confidencial. Retrieved 15 March 2016.
- Navás, José Antonio (8 March 2016). "Sáenz adquiere un 5% del 'holding' africano de Alberto Cortina y Alejandro Betancourt" (in Spanish). El Confidencial. Retrieved 14 March 2016.
- "DERWICK ASSOCIATES S.A.". OpenCorporates. Retrieved 6 October 2014.
- "Alfa Oil Dream Nears Reality as Pacific Rubiales Accepts Bid". Bloomberg News. 21 May 2015. Retrieved 26 May 2015.
- "Alejandro Betancourt". Bloomberg Business. Bloomberg News. Retrieved 28 October 2015.
- "Pacific Exploration & Production Announces Changes to its Board of Directors and Nomination Agreement with ALFA and the O'Hara Group". PR Newswire. 31 August 2015. Retrieved 28 October 2015.
- "O'Hara Administration Co., S.A.: Private Company Information". Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved 5 October 2016.
- Willis, Andrew; Deveau, Scott (17 August 2016). "Mexico’s Chico Pardo, O’Hara Said in Group Bid for Pacific E&P". Bloomberg Markets. Retrieved 5 October 2016.
- Lunden, Ingrid (4 October 2016). "Spain’s sunglasses startup Hawkers nabs $56M to take on the Ray-Bans of the world". TechCrunch. Retrieved 5 October 2016.
- Valladares, Elena Campos. "Hawkers nombra presidente a Alejandro Betancourt". FashionNetwork.com (in Spanish). Retrieved 2016-12-27.
- "Derwick gana el Premio "Capital" a la Mejor Iniciativa Empresarial Latinoamericana". Qué!. Grupo Gestiona. Retrieved 26 June 2014.
- "Thor Leonardo Halvorssen Mendoza sues Derwick, alleging corruption." Miami Herald. Accessed 4 April 2014.
- (in Spanish) Correo del Orinoco. "Banesco y Derwick Associates desmiente vinculación con Diosdado Cabello". Retrieved 8 April 2014.
- (in Spanish) Venezolana de Televisión. "Desmienten supuesto soborno al presidente del Parlamento venezolano, Diosdado Cabello". Retrieved 7 April 2014.
- (in Spanish) El Nuevo Herald. "Banesco desmiente el pago de $50 millones a Cabello a través de ese banco". Retrieved 7 April 2014.