June 7, 2018 / 4:13 PM / 2 months ago

BPER CEO says fighting pressure to cut bad debt with collection unit sale

MILAN, June 7 (Reuters) - The head of BPER Banca said on Thursday Italy’s sixth-largest bank was being courted by investors eyeing its debt collection business but wanted to hold onto the unit despite “enormous pressure” to quickly shed soured loans.

Sources have said Italy’s third-largest bank Banco BPM plans to use the sale of a stake in its debt collection unit to raise targets for bad loan reduction.

The sale of the unit helps banks fetch a better price on bad loans they shed with it, allowing them to get rid of bigger amounts than they would otherwise without incurring losses.

“The challenge we face is to keep our unit in-house ... (however) it’s clear we face enormous pressure to cut non-performing loans ... Let’s hope we can stand the pressure,” CEO Alessandro Vandelli told a meeting of the UILCA trade union.

“I must say clearly that we’re being courted by investors, even very important ones.”

Bper ceo says would like to avoid selling debt servicing unit but faces “enormous pressure” to reduce soured loans Bper ceo says “being courted by investors, including some very important ones” over unit sale (Reporting by Andrea Mandala, writing by Valentina Za,)

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