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GGN | The Saga of Eike Batista


Source: GGN.

It is official: OGX, the oil and gas division of the Eike Batista “X” group — EBX — has filed for bankruptcy.

In the aftermath, and in the background of the “rise and fall” narratives that proliferate  —  as Luis Nassif points out, is a metanarrative, a narration of the narrators as they narrate.

Today’s “Valor” has an article comparing the fall of industrialist Eike Batista with the flattering remarks about him by president Dilma Rousseff.

There are two moments in Eike’s life. At the pinnacle of his success, he was the foremost symbol of Brazlian entrepreneurship. After the fall from grace, he is treated as the bastard child of state capitalism. At the pinnacle, the object of the most perverse sort of cult of personality. After the fall, it is “Take the kid. He’s yours.”

The hypocrisy of the shapers of public image is just that. With success comes flattery and the hope of future partnerships. With failure, a merciless beating.

At the pinnacle, Eike was saluted by  Veja as an exemplary entrepreneur. Época magazine gave him an award. When the ship capsized, the same Época supplied a cover story saying that Eike was   a symbol of the failure of state capitalism, while  Jorge Paulo Lehmann symbolized the success of the market.  Lehmann had better not slip up, or else he will find himself subject to the same hypocrisy.

The Epoca cover contrasts the two figures, Lehmann and Batista.

It confirms the old saying that “an ugly child has no father.” Eike had two fathers: the market and the State.

Eike: The Golden Age of Rock 'n' Roll

Eike: The Golden Age of Rock ‘n’ Roll

If the Valor article were to be more complete, it would have to include:

  1. The newspaper’s own flattering coverage at the pinnacle of Eike’s success.
  2. Statements by Cândido Bracher, CEO of BBA-Itaú: “We are proud to have helped get the grand projects of the group off the groun.” This, together with enthusiastic evaluations of Eike by  Itaú, Bradesco and major international private equity funds, government ministers, and executives in general
  3. The choice of Eike as Business Leader of the Year in 2011, by the Lide Group.
  4. His election as “bold business executive of the year” by IstoÉ magazine.
  5. The chairman of the EBX group, Eike Batista, is named personality of the year by Destaque Ademi — The Real Estate Master Prize 2011, promoted by the regional Association of Real Estate Company Executives  (Ademi) and the International Federation of Real Estate Professionals Federação Internacional das Profissões Imobiliárias (FIABCI).
  6. An award from the magazine Fast Company lists Eike among the four most creative Brazilian business leaders.
  7. OSX receives “Deal of the Year — 2010”, in the  Project Finance category, awarded by Marine Money International.
  8. Eike Batista is listed among the 1,000 key CEOs in the world, in the “visionary entrepreneurs” category, by IstoÉ Dinheiro magazine.
  9. Eike Batista is the only Brazilian on the Bloomberg Markets list of the most influential business leaders.
  10. As chairman and CEO of Grupo EBX he is elected Business Personality of the Year by the Brazilian Association of Business and Marketing  (ABMN).
  11. Revista Época magazine elects Eike Batista as one of the 100 most influential Brazilians of 2011. The list includes personalities outstanding in their power, talent, accomplishments and motivational or inspirational abilities.
  12. Eike is one of two Brazilians cited in the book World Changers — 25 Entrepreneurs Who Changed Business As We Knew It,” dealing with 24 world entrepreneurs that transformed business.
  13. Eike is also a Brazilian Leader, in the Oil & Gas category, a prize promoted by the Grupo Doria and the daily Brasil Econômico.
  14. OSX is feted for “Latin America Upstream Deal of the Year”, as part of EuroMoney’s “13th Annual Project Finance Americas Deal of the Year Awards.”
  15. MMX receives a prize in the Mining Sector from  Abrasca (Brazilian Association of Publicly Traded Companies).
  16. Brazilian Propaganda (Advertising) Association names Eike Batista its personality of the the year.