September 26, 2019 / 6:00 AM / 19 days ago

Italy's Popolare di Bari close to buying small bank - CEO to press

MILAN (Reuters) - Italian cooperative bank Popolare di Bari is close to making three acquisitions, including a small bank, chief executive Vincenzo De Bustis said in an interview with daily Il Sole 24 ore published on Thursday.

De Bustis said the bank expected to close the merger with a small bank and “two other instrumental vehicles” by the end of this year, but didn’t provide any further details on the planned purchases.

These deals will allow Popolare di Bari to transform about 350 million euros 350 million euros (£310.01 million) of deferred tax assets into capital, thanks to incentives set by Rome to spur M&A deals among banks in central and southern Italy, he added.

De Bustis said the troubled bank would then split in two: a cooperative lender and a new multi-channel bank to be listed.

Reporting by Giulio Piovaccari; Editing by Shri Navaratnam

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