Client profile:

The client is a US-based Fortune 500 company in the online retail business. As part of the expansion plan, several executives traveled across the world to coordinate various projects.


The company tasked two executives to travel to Sao Paulo to coordinate the opening of a distribution center in Brazil. To facilitate the executives’ schedule, the company requested ETS to explore alternative transportation means to reduce risks and timing. Furthermore, the executives were also tasked to engage a new potential partner and had scheduled a meeting to discuss the opportunity.

The client also requested a thorough risk assessment on the new potential partner, focusing on any potential affiliation with local organized crime.

Sao Paulo, Brazil

Sao Paulo, Brazil

Preliminary assessment:

ETS conducted a risk assessment of the client and analyzed the proposed venue for the meeting. All the routes connecting the three locations were also surveyed.

We proposed to transfer the executives from the airport to the hotel and the meeting’s venue, via helicopter due to traffic congestions that cause significant disruption of the schedule.

The risk assessment on the potential partner did not reveal any connection (past or present) to organized crime and no pending investigations or alleged involvement in any corruption or bribery case.

We relayed our findings to the client who accepted our strategy for this project.

Kidnapping rate in Brazil (rates per 100,000 population)

Kidnapping rate in Brazil (rates per 100,000 population)

Violent crimes in Brazil – 2019 rates

Violent crimes in Brazil – 2019 rates

Security approach

ETS through a local vetted and reliable partner, selected the helicopter and two former Brazilian Airforce pilots to conduct the transfers from and to the airport and the meeting’s venue.

Sao Paulo, especially for foreign travelers is considered high-risk. Armed robberies, assaults, and car-jacking occur daily anywhere in the city. The unpredictability of the perpetrators and the tendency to use violence pose a serious threat to any traveler unfamiliar with the environment.

ETS, for the protection of the executives on the ground, assigned two non-armored, low-profile vehicles including security drivers and two-armed, close protection officers.

The operation:

We coordinated the arrival and transferred the executives from the airport to the heliport.

The second team was standing by at the heliport to transport them to the hotel.

The executives safely arrived at the hotel and retreated for the day.

The following two days all movements were conducted by the primary team while the second team acted in a surveillance detection capacity without reporting any suspicious activity around the executives or the venues.

On meeting day, we transferred the executives to the heliport while the second team was surveilling the arrival area.

After the meeting, the flight back to the hotel was on time and no further incidents were reported.


ETS Brazil, in the past 8 years, has provided a variety of ad-hoc security services for a variety of clients conducting business in Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Brasilia, most of the tourist hot spots, and the Amazon rainforest.

The knowledge of the culture and the territory, the experience of our assets, and local security and law enforcement network, second to none, allowed our highly experienced operators to enable clients’ operations while protecting people, reputation, brand, and assets.

In this case, utilizing helicopters to minimize risks on the road, paired with real-time information and emergency protocols in place, allowed ETS to avoid any incident, maintaining the clients safe at all times.


Upon completion of the task, we received feedback from the clients: “ It was our first time in Sao Paulo and before departure, we did some research concerning crime and violence in the city. Our security detail’s demeanor, competence, and nice manners provided such peace of mind that was instrumental for the successful completion of our task and the acquisition of a new business partner. We believe that there is no other way to safely do business in Brazil and we are grateful for a very positive experience.”