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Mar 28, 2015

Dufry to buy Italy’s World Duty Free in $3.8 bln deal

MILAN, March 28 (Reuters) – Switzerland’s Dufry has
agreed to buy a majority stake in World Duty Free in a
deal which values the Italian firm at 3.6 billion euros ($3.8
billion) and will make it by far the world’s biggest travel

Edizione, the holding company owned by the Benetton family
and controlling World Duty Free (WDF), said on Saturday it was
selling its 50.1 percent stake in the group to Dufry for 10.25
euros per share.

Mar 23, 2015

After Pirelli, Chinese shopping spree in Italy to continue

MILAN, March 23 (Reuters) – After years of economic decline,
Italy has become a hunting ground for Chinese companies keen to
take control of prized but cash-strapped corporate names such as
Pirelli, and they are no longer investing from the back seat.

“The Chinese have the capital, Italy has the brands, the
products and the know-how, but no money,” said a banker with
direct knowledge of the Pirelli deal.

Mar 22, 2015

Monte Paschi Chairman Profumo says to step down after share sale

MILAN, March 22 (Reuters) – The chairman of troubled Monte
dei Paschi di Siena, Alessandro Profumo, said he will
step down after Italy’s third-biggest bank completes a 3 billion
euro ($3.3 billion) rights issue in the next few months.

The veteran Italian banker was named in 2012 to turn around
the world’s oldest bank after its costly acquisition of local
rival Antonveneta as well as the euro zone debt crisis nearly
triggered its collapse.

Mar 18, 2015

Italian banks set to take up bulk of ECB longer-term funding

MILAN, March 18 (Reuters) – Big Italian banks are expected
to take up the bulk of longer-term cheap funds offered by the
European Central Bank this week, as a recovery in the domestic
economy encourages them to lend more, according to figures
provided by banks and compiled by Reuters.

Data collected from 14 large Italian lenders showed they
would request an overall 32 billion euros ($34 billion) at
Thursday’s TLTRO tender. That compares with a total take-up of
40 billion euros estimated by analysts in a Reuters poll.

Feb 26, 2015

Cyberonics, Italy’s Sorin merge to create medical technology leader

MILAN (Reuters) – Italian medical device maker Sorin and its smaller U.S. peer Cyberonics Inc (CYBX.O: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) announced a merger on Thursday to create a global leader in cardiac surgery and neuromodulation with an equity value of $2.7 billion.

The all-stock deal values the Italian company at about $1.4 billion, a 14.2 percent premium to its market capitalisation before the deal was announced.

Feb 25, 2015

Italy’s approval of Monte dei Paschi deal raises new questions

ROME (Reuters) – Italy’s Monte dei Paschi bank hoped to become a big player of European finance when it bought rival Antonveneta in 2007. Instead, the takeover triggered a decline that is culminating in the 500-year-old bank putting itself up for sale.

Now, evidence uncovered by Reuters shows Italian regulators knew of the risks harbored at Antonveneta before approving the deal.

Feb 11, 2015

Monte dei Paschi ups size of cash call to 3 bln euros after 2014 loss

MILAN, Feb 11 (Reuters) – Monte dei Paschi di Siena
has raised the size of a planned capital increase to 3
billion euros ($3.39 billion) to meet tough capital targets set
by the European Central Bank after reporting its fourth
consecutive annual loss.

The bank, which has been hit by the euro zone debt crisis
and a scandal over loss-making derivatives contracts, emerged as
the weakest lender in a Europe-wide health check of banks last

Feb 10, 2015

Italian banks see turning point on loan loss charges

MILAN, Feb 10 (Reuters) – Italian banks set aside less cash
than expected to cover for soured loans in the last quarter of
last year, signalling they might be starting to see the light at
the end of the tunnel as Italy’s economy is set to emerge from a

Italy’s biggest retail bank, Intesa Sanpaolo kicked
off the reporting season by raising its shareholder payout and
Popolare di Milano also returned to paying a dividend
for the first time in four years.

Feb 7, 2015

Central bank raises Italy growth forecasts

MILAN, Feb 7 (Reuters) – The Italian economy is expected to
grow more than previously forecast this year and the next as a
result of the European Central Bank’s bond buying programme,
Bank of Italy Governor Ignazio Visco said on Saturday.

The Italian central bank now expects the euro area’s
third-largest economy – and its most sluggish – to expand by
more than 0.5 percent this year and more than 1.5 percent the
next, Visco said in a speech at a financial conference.

Feb 7, 2015

State intervention could help Italy banks offload bad debts-BOI

MILAN, Feb 7 (Reuters) – State intervention could help
Italian banks offload soured loans, the governor of the Bank of
Italy said on Saturday as the government considers options to
mop up problematic debts and revive bank lending to the economy.

Bad loans stood at 181 billion euros ($208 billion) in
November, accounting for 10.6 percent of all loans at leading
Italian banks, which fared worst in a Europe-wide health check
of the sector last year.