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UniCredit May Appoint Two General Managers at Board Meeting

Oct. 14 (Bloomberg) -- UniCredit SpA Chief Executive Officer Federico Ghizzoni may propose the appointment of two general managers in an attempt to smooth relations with investors, two people with direct knowledge of the matter said.

Ghizzoni, who succeeded Alessandro Profumo Sept. 30, will nominate Deputy CEOs Roberto Nicastro and Sergio Ermotti to the new positions at a board meeting next week, said the people, who declined to be identified because the discussions are private.

Ghizzoni is putting in place a new management structure in an effort to end the investor infighting that led to the departure of Profumo, who clashed with Italian banking foundations that own 11 percent of the company. Shareholders, including Fondazione Cassamarca, are urging Italy’s biggest bank to create a general manager position to focus on local issues.

“Nicastro’s nomination may get the support of foundations worried about the bank’s retail business, while Ermotti may win the market’s favor,” said Fabrizio Spagna, the CEO of Axia Financial Research in Padua, Italy.

Nicastro, 45, who was considered for the CEO job last month, is a former McKinsey & Co. consultant and joined Credito Italiano as head of planning in 1997. In 2003 he was appointed head of the bank’s retail division and became one of the deputy CEOs in 2007.

Ermotti, 50, worked 18 years at Merrill Lynch and joined UniCredit in 2005 as head of its markets and investment banking division. He was named a deputy CEO in July 2007.

To contact the reporters on this story: Sonia Sirletti in Milan at sirletti@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Frank Connelly at fconnelly@bloomberg.net

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