(Corrects number of names put forward by funds to 7 from 14)
MILAN Nov 22 Telco, which controls Telecom
Italia via a 22.4 percent stake, said on Friday it
will vote against a proposal to remove the current board of the
phone company at a shareholder meeting next month.
Telecom Italia shareholders are to meet on Dec. 20 to vote
on the removal of the board, a proposal made by minority
investor Findim, which owns 5 percent of the company.
Findim and some retail investors in Telecom Italia have been
in an uproar over a recent deal that gives Spain's Telefonica
, which is a member of holding company Telco, the option
to gain control of Italy's largest phone group without having to
launch a takeover bid.
Telco, which appointed the majority of the phone company's
current board, said in a statement that its own board "has
decided to vote against the proposal of shareholder Findim".
If shareholders revoke the board then they will have to vote
on a new slate of directors.
Telco's statement listed three candidates it would put
forward in this case. They are Marco Patuano, current CEO of the
phone company, Julio Linares, Telefonica's chief operating
officer, and law professor Stefania Bariati.
In a separate statement, representatives of 14 Italian and
foreign institutional investors, with a combined stake of 1.585
percent, put forward seven names including current Telecom
Italia independent directors Luigi Zingales and Lucia Calvosa.
The 14 funds, which are members of industry body
Assogestioni, did not disclose their voting plans.
Analysts say chances of the board being removed are slim
because some large funds are seen voting against the move.
Besides Telefonica, Telco's members are Italian banks Intesa
and Mediobanca and insurer Generali
Findim has said it would vote for the list presented by
(Reporting by Danilo Masoni; Editing by Anthony Barker)