By Shane McGinley
Intesa Sanpaolo expands its presence in UAE after last year's Dubai launch
Intesa Sanpaolo, Italy's biggest
retail bank, is to open a representative office in Abu Dhabi, as the
loss-making lender looks to overseas markets for growth.
Intesa Sanpaolo opened a branch
in Dubai last year and the UAE will be its fourth overseas hubs for corporate
and investment banking.
The move overseas comes as the
bank posted a fourth-quarter net loss because of a
€10.2bn (US$13.3bn) writedown of goodwill related to mergers and acquisitions.
The net loss was
€10.1bn, compared with net income of 505 million euros a year earlier. Excluding
one-time items, the quarterly profit was
€265m, the Milan-based
lender said in a statement. Analysts expected profit of
according to the average of 10 estimates compiled by Bloomberg. The bank cut
its dividend by 3 cents to 5 cents per share.
Enrico Tommaso Cucchiani was
named as chief executive officer in November to replace Corrado Passera and is
working on a business plan review to take into account negative market
development and recession in Italy. Intesa is shedding jobs and reducing costs
to strengthen finances as part of its five-year business plan.
“Intesa’s operating performance,
net of 2011 non-recurring items, is expected to remain broadly stable,” the
bank said in the statement. In the first quarter of the year operating profit
may record a double-digit growth, Cucchiani said.