Brazil in the crosshairs
But what — or who — is really behind the soft coup in Brazil?
We defend free markets, lower taxes and the privatisation of all public companies. … In Brazil, the left is still seen as cool by young people. … We want to destroy this idea that if you defend free markets then you’re an old man who is asking for a dictatorship. … Unfortunately, we don’t have any big sponsors. The government and some sectors of the press say that we are financed by rich people. We would have no problem in being financed by rich people.
In the U.S., Lemann is virtually unknown, even though he and his two longtime partners, Marcel Herrmann Telles and Carlos Alberto Sicupira, now control three icons of U.S. consumer culture: Heinz ketchup, Burger King, and, after the $52 billion takeover of Anheuser-Busch in 2008, Budweiser beer. The combined market value of the companies they run is $187 billion—larger than that of Citigroup.In Brazil, Lemann is a business-class hero. … Worth some $20 billion, Lemann is No. 32 on the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, seven slots behind George Soros and three ahead of Carl Icahn.