Italy’s Bank Fund Hires Deutsche Bank to Advise on Carige Sale

Italy’s interbank fund hired Deutsche Bank AG as financial adviser to manage the sale of Banca Carige SpA, after Cassa Centrale Banca backed out of the purchase on concerns about the profitability outlook amid the pandemic.

The banking fund, dubbed FITD, owns 80% of Carige after it rescued the troubled Italian lender in 2019, injecting about 600 million euros ($706 million) of fresh funds. As part of the bailout, unlisted CCB bought an 8.3% stake, with an option to buy FITD’s remaining holding by the end of this year. Last month CCB decided to not exercise the option, leaving the stake with the banking fund.

While seeking to dispose of the controlling stake, FITD “will continue its commitment to support Banca Carige,” the fund said in the statement.

Banca Carige lurched from crisis to crisis and ended up being put under administration by the European Central Bank before the rescue orchestrated by the country’s interbank deposit guarantee fund. Since then the bank has struggled to revamp, recording losses in 2020 three times higher than expected under its business plan.

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