UniCredit CEO calm on sale of BoI stake in Generali to state fund

MILAN Tue Dec 18, 2012 2:22pm EST

MILAN (Reuters) - Unicredit Chief Executive Federico Ghizzoni said on Tuesday he is comfortable with the sale of the Bank of Italy's stake in Assicurazioni Generali (GASI.MI) to state-backed fund Fondo Strategico Italiano (FSI).

"We have read that the buyer will be FSI and it (the stake) will be managed on a medium term horizon... I am very tranquil," Ghizzoni said.

"It would have been different if it had been on a short-term horizon," he said.

The Bank of Italy, which will become Italy's insurance regulator early in 2013, is considering a sale of its 4.5 percent stake in Generali to FSI to avert a possible conflict of interest.

Some shareholders have voiced concern about the risk of political interference if the stake were to be sold to FSI and managed on a short-term basis.

Unicredit is a shareholder of Generali's leading shareholder Mediobanca (MDBI.MI)

(Reporting by Gianluca Semeraro; editing by Francesca Landini)