MILANO, Oct 28 (Reuters) - Mediobanca results rely much less on the bank’s stake in insurer Generali than 10 years ago, Chief Executive Alberto Nagel said on Monday, rejecting criticism from new Mediobanca investor Leonardo Del Vecchio.
The 84-year-old billionaire founder of eyewear maker Luxottica has become Mediobanca’s second-largest investor with a 7.5% stake and is calling on the storied Milanese bank to boost its investment banking business and grow through M&A, relying less on consumer credit and its 13% stake in Generali.
“To say that Mediobanca results rely on Generali made sense 10 years ago but it is no longer true. Ten years ago Generali accounted for 25% of group revenues, now for 12.5%,” Nagel told Mediobanca’s annual general meeting.
“I hope Generali will remain an independent company based in Italy,” he added.
He said that Mediobanca did not need to sell the Generali stake as European rules on banks holding stakes in insurers had changed, but added it could still do it if it needed to fund M&A opportunities in wealth management.
Reporting by Gianluca Semeraro; editing by Giulio Piovaccari