Less salon capitalism, more market. The new strategy launched by Mediobanca CEO Alberto Nagel, with the presentation of the new business plan for 2014-2016, calls for an exit from the shareholders’ agreement that is about to expire, in order to return its full assets to the shares produced.
The motive, according to the bank’s senior management, is thatcrossed holdings “are a legacy of the past, and today they no longer represent to the best way to allocate capital.
” The new course of action is also confirmed by a revolution in top management. At the beginning of December, the institution appointed Stefano Marsaglia as Executive Chairman of Corporate & Investment Banking. The banker – who is well-known in the Italian banking community, where for years he was partnered with Alessandro Daffina at the highest levels of Rothschild – came directly from senior management at Barclays Capital and will continue to be based in London, which will become the center of industry activities and capital markets for Piazzetta Cuccia (Mediobanca’s Milan headquarters).
Marsaglia, age 58, will respond directly to Alberto Nagel, and will contribute his 30 years of experience in the sector, where he was advisor in many of the biggest mergers, acquisitions, and transfers in Europe, the Middle East, Asia, and America – as Mediobanca was careful to emphasize when announcing his appointment. Marsaglia, “a veteran banker,” as Reuters defined him, was also a consultant to many governments and state institutions during the recent financial crisis and privatizations, and guided numerous capital increases and IPOs of banks and industrial societies.
This is a radical choice for the historic Milanese bank, which has grown accustomed to the internal cooptation of its own ruling class. It is a choice that was nevertheless made in function of the new strategic plan, which is focused, at least with regard to corporate & investment banking, on reinforcing the international presence of the institution.