Eike is no longer a billionaire

“Eike Batista, who came to be the 8th richest person in the world, isn’t a billionaire anymore. The businessman’s fortune was estimated this Thursday to be US$200 million. It’s quite the fall, for someone who, in March 2012, had US$34.5 billion. The data is from Bloomberg’s billionaire ranking.” – Folha (PT)

Quite the fall, indeed. A bit of background on the Daily Beast.

Poeme-se: Business of poetry

Screen Shot 2013-05-27 at 2.57.58 PM
(“Procure-se…Mario Quintana”)

And in the beginning was the word. Thus arose Poeme-se, a brand defined by its creators as an ’empresa-verso ‘ (a company of verses). It was during their honeymoon that ad-man Gledson Rio Machado and his wife, Gabriella Santoro, had the idea to create the first poetic brand in the market.

The desire to live off art was already old and during classes of spoken poetry in the Casa Poema, in the city of Rio de Janeiro, they had the insight to put together poetic interventions with a business model that is currently the entrepreneur’s only source of income.

In the beginning, the entrepreneurs bought shirts from other brands and applied the prints. Today, they make the shirts and offer other products such as bags, coasters, mugs and cushions, which are produced in São Paulo and Minas Gerais. The price of each shirt ranges from R$35 to R$54.

“The first year was about the creation of the business plan, when we got to know the market and the feasibility. The end of 2011 was, in fact, the moment we entered the market. We were invited by the organizations Feira do Rio Antigo and the Babilônia Feira Hype to participate in events,” says the founder of the brand.

From the need to expand the business to social networks, Poeme-se got a partner, publicist, designer and also lover of poetry, Philip Carrico, 25, responsible for the administration of social media, the online store and part of the creation of graphic materials and prints.

“In 2012, we got partnerships with important literary and fashion segments, strengthening our presence at events like the Literary Festival of Santa Teresa (FLIST) and the Paraty International Literary Festival (FLIP). Now, we’re reinforcing the Poeme-se concept physically to São Paulo, along with Poesis, the company responsible for managing the soirees of Casa das Rosas,” says Carrico.

The business, which began in November 2010, was worth R$43 thousand in sales in the first quarter of 2013. Last year, with the investment in the online store and retail outlets, the entrepreneurs were able to triple the turnover compared to 2011, reaching R$54 thousand.

The Poeme-se brand is currently maintaining a showroom at Rio’s Casa Poema, owned by the actress Elisa Lucinda. The company’s plan, however, points towards opening a physical store, also in Rio by next year. – Source (PT)


E para quem realmente gosta de poesia, veja o documentário sobre Manoel de Barros.

This Week’s Brazil Videos

Lorenzo Bustani, a young Brazilian marketing executive, explains how he’s advising Nike and other giant American brands that want a foothold in Brazil ahead of the Olympics. The bottom line? They need to make an impact on the community before they can make an impact on the consumer. As part of “The Real Brazil” special series, he gives Bloomberg’s Trish Regan a tour of a Rio skatepark built by Nike – but with no trace of the company’s logo.

Stratfor explains Brazil’s geographic challenge to consolidate control over its vast territory and connect its regions more efficiently.

Brazil has officially inaugurated its new national stadium in the capital, Brasilia.President Dilma Rousseff took to the pitch in what is Brazil’s most expensive stadium, having cost more than $750m to build.With the Confederations Cup less than a month away and the World Cup little more than a year away, Brazil has rushed to complete 12 new stadiums in the country.

Trish Regan investigates Brazil’s immense oil reserves, and explains how General Electric is developing new technology in an attempt to extract it from beneath the ocean floor.

Famous for its churches, the historic city of Ouro Preto, in Minas Gerais, turned into a track for the best of downhill mountainbike riders in South America. 18-year-old Lucas Borba won the Red Bull Desafio das Cruzes.

Trish Regan reports on how a cheap, bland (but oddly refreshing) Rio beach drink has broken into the American market, and set off a brand war between beverage giants Coke and Pepsi.

Imagina na Copa


“Imagina na Copa!”, loosely translated as “Imagine it during the World Cup!” is a phrase that has been oft-repeated in Brazil in the last year or two. For most of its lifespan, it has been used to refer to something that doesn’t work the way it should or to something that will worsen (such as traffic congestion) during a mega-event such as the World Cup. But what if the phrase was transformed into a force for good? That’s the hope of the site Imagina na Copa which is posting, week by week, 75 stories of how young people are improving their own surroundings.

“Every week, we’re going to post stories of young people that are transforming the country for the better. These stories will serve as inspiration and will show that it’s possible to make a difference with the resources that we have. The idea here is also to facilitate the interaction between the visitors to the site and the young people behind the initiatives.”

The site will also sponsor workshops for up to 25 young people in the 12 Brazilian host cities. The objective being to help those interested to better understand the project and plan their own involvement. By combining theory, design and practice, the team behind the site hope to generate interest as well as new ideas.

As part of week 9, the story revolves around two social entrepreneurs who are transforming their city of Porto Alegre. They decided the 5,000 bus stops in Porto Alegre needed some sort of sign that indicated which bus routes passed by that location. The way they went about it was to create large stickers with white space where bus riders themselves could write in the bus routes. The collaborative effort was vandalized more than once and now the governmental entity in charge of transportation in the city is working in conjunction with the entrepreneurs to implement the project in the best way possible.

If you’d like to see the other 8 stories (thus far) from Imagina na Copa, you can do so on their site or via their Youtube channel.

The Red Cross Brazil help button

It’s a nice idea but it’s a faith-based donation. There’s no proof that the money sent is actually going towards something concrete, real and immediate. Better is to find out, via the news, which organizations are on the ground helping people and to contact them to figure out the best way to contribute. To compare on a micro-scale, a homeless person needs a place to sleep, a job, and/or a warm dinner…not spare change.


Brazil to become Hotelandia

An article in O Globo today states that Copacabana will get 12 more hotels by 2016 and the Residents Association is looking to complain. Good luck. The famous neighborhood already has 63 hotels (with a total of 7,300 rooms). The hotels, plus a few that are being upgraded, will generate R$500 million and 1,300 jobs…but I wonder where that money actually goes and will those jobs still be around after the Games? Again, good luck.

All in all, according to O Globo, there are 101 accomodation-based construction projects (hotels, hostels, B&Bs, etc) either already approved or being analyzed by the gov’t, which will bring about an additional 14,671 rooms in the next few years. It’s not certain from the article if those will be restricted to Rio or if they are for the whole country, though I get the feeling they’ll be for Rio.

But that’s not all, USA Today has this to say…

“Brazil’s in the midst of a hotel building boom that promises to deliver thousands of newly built, moderately priced hotel rooms.

In fact, 200 hotels are under construction, while another 170 hotels are slated to open within the next three years, according to industry tracker Lodging Econometrics.

French hospitality giant Accor leads the pack with 55 hotels under construction”USA Today

Sad to see so much investment just for the tourists’ sake.

103 Tricky Verbs in Brazilian Portuguese ebook


103 TVBP cover

US$4.99 ______

With Eyes On Brazil turning 5 years old, I’m really excited to introduce my first ebook (PDF), 103 Tricky Verbs in Brazilian Portuguese for sale, priced at US$4.99. It is based on content I created for this blog several years back, though I’ve reworked and improved it, in addition to having it edited by native Brazilian Portuguese speakers. As a PDF, it can be viewed (via Apple’s iBooks app) on iOS devices as well as on Amazon’s Kindle devices. The ebook is aimed to make Brazilian Portuguese easier for those of you who are finding yourselves unsure of when to use one verb over another. As the title states, there are 103 Tricky Verbs, spread out over 47 Verb Sets (groupings of verbs that have similar meanings) which include example sentences and, in many cases, additional information on the verb(s). The actual Verb Sets you’ll learn about in my e-book: Screen Shot 2013-05-26 at 11.50.49 AM After countless attempts, using various formats, to prep the ebook for the Amazon marketplace, I’ve decided instead to sell it using PayPal’s Online Invoicing, which allows you to pay with a credit or debit card on PayPal’s site (even without the need for a PayPal account). Click on the button below and, once you’ve paid, PayPal will tell me so and then I’ll send you the ebook!



Don’t forget to check out 150 Tricky Words in Brazilian Portuguese!

“Olha o Globo!” – Brothers, Biscuits & Beaches

(with Two Brothers in the background)

Ask any beach-going Brazilian that has been to Rio de Janeiro what images come to mind when they think of Rio and I’d bet Biscoito Globo is one of them. The famous doughnut-shaped powder biscuits are as common a sight as the sunbathers in Ipanema applauding the beautiful sunsets, silhouetted by Two Brothers hill. Speaking of brothers, three from São Paulo deserve some applause, too, as they are responsible for another pleasing sight, one that can be sweet, like catching some rays, or salty, like the sea itself.

The brothers’ success lies in the simplicity of their product. Let’s take a closer look:

  • Two flavors – Sweet or salty
  • Easy to recognize – Always the same packaging
  • Easy to open – Good for kids (though bad for those who want to close it, meaning you should eat them all)
  • Strictly word of mouth – No advertising costs and savings passed on to the customer
  • Great with another favorite – Often sold with soft-drink Matte-Leão (and vendors wear Matte-Leão shirts)
  • Easy to remember – Globo is a name everyone knows

The rest is history (or, at least the next part is)…


According to the Biscoito Globo site, it all started in 1953 when, after their parents separated, the three Ponce brothers went to live with their cousin who had a bakery in Ipiranga, in São Paulo. It was there that they learned to make powder biscuits with their cousin, which were sold on the streets of downtown São Paulo.

In 1954, taking advantage of a large religious conference in Rio de Janeiro, the brothers decided to sell their biscuits in the carioca capital. With their recipe for success, the Ponce brothers foresaw that, given the biscuits characteristics, Rio de Janeiro would be the ideal market for what they were selling.

The powder biscuit was given the name Globo in honor of the bakery contracted to make them in Botafogo. The year was 1955 and the biscuits were sold in the Globo bakery and in seven others, owned by the same people. Realizing the large demand for them, the Ponce brothers started to sell them to other bakery chains and in 1963, they formed a partnership with a Portuguese baker, an expert in breads.


There are other positive aspects that accompany a bag of Biscoito Globo, such as the fact that it’s perfect for making one’s stomach believe it’s fuller than it is. After all, who wants to swim on a full stomach? Other associated benefits mean the customer receives something that is low in calories, low in fat, without neither coloring nor preservatives.

The biscuit vendors are called ‘ambulantes‘ and they can buy a package for 60 cents then turn around and sell it for an average price of R$1 on the beach. A pretty good deal where everyone walks away happy. Since the famous snacks don’t contain the aforementioned preservatives, they aren’t sold to the supermarkets, meaning the customers must seek out the individual vendors if they want to get their hands on the biscuits. On the beaches of Rio, that’s not a hard thing to do because the vendors are omnipresent, the packaging is unique (save for a few imitators), and the holler is the same…”Olha o Globo!”

Originally written for Street Smart Brazil.