Salem Radio Network News Monday, August 15, 2022

Business

UniCredit beats 2021 guidance, renews insurance accords with Allianz

MILAN (Reuters) -Italy’s UniCredit on Friday reported better-than-expected full-year revenues and underlying profit, despite one-off hits under a new strategy by CEO Andrea Orcel driving a fourth-quarter loss.

UniCredit said 2021 revenues came in at 18 billion euros ($20 billion), ahead of its guidance for more than 16 billion euros, and underlying profit at 3.9 billion euros, versus an indication of more than 3.7 billion. Overall costs were also slightly lower than what the bank had guided for.

Restructuring costs and other charges linked to disposals of non-core assets under a 2022-2024 plan Orcel unveiled on Dec. 9 led UniCredit to post a 1.44 billion euro loss in October-December, above an average forecast of 1.15 billion euros in a company-provided analyst consensus.

Separately on Friday, UniCredit said it had agreed to renew its insurance partnership accords with Allianz in Germany, Italy and central and eastern European countries.

Under the deal UniCredit will be able to distribute its own products through Allianz.

The two partners renewed their existing accords in Italy to 2027 with an option for UniCredit to have “strategic flexibility” from 2024.

UniCredit confirmed it would distribute 3.75 billion euros to shareholders over 2021 results, with a 1.17 billion euro cash dividend and a 2.58 billion euro share buyback.

Orcel, the former head of investment banking at UBS who took the helm in April, is betting on bold capital distribution plans to drive higher UniCredit shares, which trade at a discount to peers.

($1 = 0.8965 euros)

(Reporting by Valentina Za; editing by Agnieszka Flak)

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