Italy's UniCredit completes securitisation of 2.2 bln euro NPL portfolio

MILAN, Nov 29 (Reuters) - Italy's UniCredit (CRDI.MI) said on Monday it had completed the securitisation of a portfolio of secured and unsecured non- performing loans (NPL) worth 2.2 billion euros ($2.48 billion), in a deal backed by the GACS state guarantee scheme.

UniCredit, the only bank in Italy that regulators deem of global systemic relevance, said in a statement the portfolio was transferred to vehicle Olympia, as part of its plan to fully run down its non-core portfolio by the end of the year.

The lender said it had just accepted a binding offer to dispose 95% of mezzanine and junior notes issued by Olympia to a financial institution not belonging to UniCredit Group.

It said it would keep the minimum 5% in Olympia as required by regulations.

UniCredit said it had asked the European Central Bank to recognise the deal as accomplishing a "Significant Risk Transfer" as of Dec. 31.

The ECB's green light is necessary to deconsolidate the portfolio from UniCredit's balance sheet.

Italy introduced the 'GACS' scheme in 2016 to help banks deal with impaired debts totalling almost a fifth of total lending after a deep recession.

Under the GACS programme - which earlier this year was extended until the middle of 2022 - Italian banks can buy a guarantee from the Treasury to back the least risky notes when repackaging bad loans as securities.

Italfondiario and doValue (DOVA.MI) acted as master and special servicer respectively in the deal.

($1 = 0.8875 euros)

Reporting by Giulio Piovaccari; Editing by Susan Fenton

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