Press release

CDP Group: strategic outline of 2013-2015 Business Plan approved

Rome, 1 August  2013 - Cassa Depositi e Prestiti SpA (CDP) announces that the Board of Directors, meeting under the chairmanship of Franco Bassanini, has approved the general lines of the Group’s 2013-2015 Business Plan.

Rome, 1 August  2013 - Cassa Depositi e Prestiti SpA (CDP) announces that the Board of Directors, meeting under the chairmanship of Franco Bassanini, has approved the general lines of the Group’s 2013-2015 Business Plan. The Board of Directors is expected to approve the Plan in its details during the meeting planned for 11 September 2013.

Following the recent acquisitions of Fintecna, SACE and Simest, the Plan dictates the guidelines for the Group. In addition to the parent company CDP and the newly purchased companies, the Plan covers CDP Investimenti SGR and Fondo Italiano Strategico. 

In the time period covered by the Plan, CDP Group will continue to give strong support to Italy’s political-industrial initiatives by supplying credit destined for public investments, infrastructure and the private sector - with a long-term view - and through direct equity investments (in power grids and other strategic assets) and indirect equity investments (though Fondo Italiano di Investimento and the Italian Strategic Fund)  with the aim of supporting growth for strategic companies’ and small-and-medium-sized enterprises’ international expansion.

New resources of up to €95 billion, 6% of GDP

The Plan envisages resources of up to €80 billion, about 5% of GDP, for public entities, local governments, infrastructure and enterprises. An additional €15 billion, bringing the total up to about €95 billion, could be channelled to the economy through specific programmes to broaden the scope of the Group’s activities, in line with the approach adopted in other European countries. In this case, the contribution of the CDP Group to Italy’s growth would amount to 2% of GDP per year (6% over the course of the three-year period).

In 2011-2013, CDP already mobilized €57 billion - well above the 2011-2013 Plan’s forecasted objective of €43 billion. Considering SACE, SIMEST and Fintecna – which were acquired in 2012 – during the period 2010 - 2012 the Group injected€70 billion into the economy.

Focus on the “healthy drivers” of development

In a challenging macroeconomic environment and with a contraction in the supply of credit from the financial system, the CDP Group will continue to play its counter-cyclical role as a long-term investor, using the private-sector resources it raises – first and foremost the funds from postal savings – to focus its action on the “healthy drivers” of economic development: supporting the investment of public administrations; financing “smart” infrastructure; supporting enterprises and exports. The role of the CDP Group in supporting the country’s economy will give particular attention to the promotion of the development of southern Italy.

1.       Public entities and Territory. Up to €23 billion will be made available to sustain public productive investments, of which about €2 billion in equity capital.

In addition to continuing its direct financing of the investments of public entities, a segment in which CDP is, and will remain, the leading player, the Group will offer innovative solutions to valorise the equity investments of public entities -  through the Fondo Strategico Italiano – and to develop their real estate holdings – thanks to the FIV-Plus fund, operated by CDPI Sgr -  drawing on the resources and expertise of Fintecna Immobiliare. Particular attention will be given to the realization and further investment in social housing, through the utilization of the FIA fund managed by CDPI, and to  CDP Group will invest resources favouring  the maintenance of school buildings through focused financing and risk capital.

Finally the role of SACE FCT will be strengthened in support of programmes for the payment of the debts of public administration.

2.       Infrastructure: up to €9 billion -  of which about €0.5 billion in equity capital – will be allocated to facilitate the design, start-up and financing of infrastructure projects.

CDP’s role in the active promotion of the bankability of major public works, including through the supply of credit and investments in equity capital and leveraging the role of SACE, will be strengthened. The construction of major public works will be boosted with direct financing and investments in equity capital through FSI, which has already carried out major investments to consolidated the public utilities sector and to develop digital infrastructure.

In order to promote small infrastructure - above all greenfield-  work has begun on creating an ad hoc fund which will seek to reach co-investment agreements with other long-term institutional investors.

As the primary shareholder of the country’s main energy grids (SNAM and Terna, as well as the TAG gas pipeline), CDP intends to promote the realization of plans to strengthen grid infrastructure, give equal access to operators and the implementation of the national energy strategy.

3.       Enterprises: up to €48 billion – of which about €3.5 billion in equity capital – will be deployed to support the growth and international expansion of enterprises and to leverage strategic assets for the country.

The Plan envisages the comprehensive activation of synergies with SACE and SIMEST in the area of exports and the international expansion of Italian companies, the decisive use of existing mechanisms to support the economy (SME Fund) and the promotion of the efficient use of  facilitated credit instruments managed on behalf of government, and spurring investments through mechanisms such as, for example, a Fund for Business Networks.

In the key sectors of the Italian economy, the Plan provides for the full use of the resources still available to Fondo Strategico Italiano (€3 billion) by 2015, for which a fund-raising campaign has been undertaken to attract new institutional investors.

The role of the CDP Group in facilitating foreign investment in Italy will be pursued through the joint venture of FSI with the Qatar sovereign wealth fund for Italy’s leading export sectors (Made in Italy), the collaboration with the EIB and the opening of the holding company for strategic networks to other investors while retaining a controlling interest.

CDP will also support the increase of competitiveness of Fincantieri, evaluating the best strategies to promote the company’s growth.

4.       Southern Italy. The role of the CDP Group in supporting the Italian economy will also involve fostering the development of southern Italy, for which some €20 billion in resources were mobilised by the Group over the last three years. Over the course of the Plan, specific initiatives have been envisaged for the consolidation of the public utilitiescontrolled by local authorities, the expansion of investments in social housing, including through the promotion of the use of EU structural funds, the direct financing of port, rail and turistic infrastructure, and leveraging the Fincantieri Group, with a positive impact on the major production centres in the area.

5.       Other initiatives. Specific interventions conceived to expand the Group’s scope of operations could receive up to €15 billion in additional resources (for a total of €95 billion), in a range of segments:

•        Public entities and local government: up to €4 billion for other initiatives as part of government programmes to finance the payment of government debts;

•        Infrastructure: up to about €1 billion through the expansion of operations to comprise project finance transactions abroad and granting financing to enterprises operating in the public works sector;

•        Enterprises: up to about €5 billion for new export finance and international expansion products, a fund for medium-sized enterprises, a “machinery, plant and equipment” fund, tools to favour access to credit for enterprises (mini-bonds issued by SMEs; securitizaton of loans to companies);

•        Real estate: up to about €5 billion in the financing for residential building through the banking system, partly with a view to fostering energy efficiency.

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