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ASSICURAZIONI GENERALI S.P.A.

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Italian billionaires seek allies in battle over Generali CEO

09/17/2021 | 02:15pm EDT
FILE PHOTO: Philippe Donnet, CEO of the Italian insurance company Generali, is seen before shareholders meeting in Trieste

* Italy's top insurer prepares to name new board

* Shareholders at odds over choice of new CEO

* Dispute pits Mediobanca against Del Vecchio, Caltagirone

MILAN, Sept 17 (Reuters) - Two Italian tycoons who are leading investors in Generali are looking for allies after joining forces in a bid to have a say over the choice of the insurer's next chief executive, a document showed on Friday.

Construction magnate Francesco Gaetano Caltagirone and eyewear billionaire Leonardo Del Vecchio on Saturday unveiled a shareholder pact to consult over decisions concerning Generali ahead of a general meeting in early 2022 to name a new board.

Following a request by market regulator Consob to disclose additional information about the agreement, Generali on Friday said the pact clinched by Del Vecchio, 86, and Caltagirone, 78, was open to other investors.

On Friday, banking foundation Fondazione CRT, which holds 1.4% of Generali, agreed to join the pact, its chairman, Giovanni Quaglia, told Reuters.

Del Vecchio and Caltagirone have no plans to effectively control the insurer through their combined 11.1% stake, so as to avoid triggering a mandatory buyout offer, the document said.

Generali CEO Philippe Donnet has come under pressure from Caltagirone and Del Vecchio, who consider his merger and acquisitions strategy insufficiently ambitious, sources have previously said.

Donnet has the backing of Mediobanca, Italy's top investment bank and the main Generali investor with a 13% stake.

In a move that could potentially give them more clout over Generali, both Del Vecchio and Caltagirone have built stakes in Mediobanca.

Highlighting a fracture within the board, Generali on Monday said a majority of its directors was in favour of Donnet's reappointment.

Without a compromise, Del Vecchio and Caltagirone are ready to back an alternative CEO candidate, sources have said.

But they need to recruit allies to counter the influence of Mediobanca, which on Monday could count on the support of eight out of 12 non-executive Generali board members at the meeting.

Among the eight was Lorenzo Pelliccioli, who represents Italy's De Agostini group, a 1.5% investor in Generali, according to people close to the matter.

Italy's Benetton family, which owns 4% of Generali but has no representatives on its board, has yet to take sides and could decide in the coming weeks following Fondazione CRT's decision, the people said. The Benettons had no comment.

Del Vecchio and Caltagirone will have to contend also with institutional investors, which own around 40% of Generali, Europe's third-largest insurer. (Reporting by Claudia Cristoferi, Gianluca Semeraro; writing by Valentina Za; editing by Steve Orlofsky)


© Reuters 2021
Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
ASSICURAZIONI GENERALI S.P.A. 0.24% 18.455 Delayed Quote.29.07%
CALTAGIRONE SPA 0.92% 4.37 Delayed Quote.45.18%
ESSILORLUXOTTICA 0.07% 167.06 Real-time Quote.30.93%
MEDIOBANCA S.P.A. -0.25% 10.14 Delayed Quote.34.81%
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Financials
Sales 2021 73 485 M 85 625 M 85 625 M
Net income 2021 2 712 M 3 160 M 3 160 M
Net Debt 2021 3 872 M 4 512 M 4 512 M
P/E ratio 2021 10,6x
Yield 2021 5,88%
Capitalization 28 983 M 33 631 M 33 772 M
EV / Sales 2021 0,45x
EV / Sales 2022 0,44x
Nbr of Employees 71 860
Free-Float 84,4%
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Assicurazioni Generali S.p.A. Technical Analysis Chart | G | IT0000062072 | MarketScreener
Technical analysis trends ASSICURAZIONI GENERALI S.P.A.
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Mean consensus OUTPERFORM
Number of Analysts 20
Last Close Price 18,41 €
Average target price 18,69 €
Spread / Average Target 1,54%
EPS Revisions
Managers and Directors
Philippe Donnet Chief Executive Officer, MD & Executive Director
Cristiano Borean Chief Financial Officer
Gabriele Galateri di Genola Chairman
Jaime Anchústegui Melgarejo Group Chief Operations & Insurance Officer
Maurizio Basso Group Compliance Officer
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