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Finmeccanica’s Guarguaglini Calls for Board Meeting Amid Probe

Nov. 20 (Bloomberg) -- Finmeccanica SpA Chairman Pier Francesco Guarguaglini called a meeting of the board of directors after the company’s director for external relations stepped down amid a probe.

Guarguaglini asked for the meeting to be held as soon as possible, Italy’s biggest defense company said in a statement today. Lorenzo Borgogni, the external relations director, said he “has always acted with respect to the law and in the best interest of the group,” Rome-based Finmeccanica said in an earlier statement.

Borgogni is stepping down until the “current judicial matter is fully clarified,” and has “expressed his full confidence in the role and ability of the magistrates,” the company said.

Borgogni is being investigated over possible illicit payments as part of a criminal inquiry in Rome into contracts for Enav SpA, Italy’s air-traffic control agency, Ansa news agency reported yesterday. Enav yesterday said Chief Executive Officer Guido Pugliesi is under house arrest.

Prosecutors also requested the arrest of Manlio Fiore, commercial director at SELEX Sistemi Integrati, a unit of Finmeccanica, Ansa reported yesterday. A Finmeccanica official, who asked not to be identified, citing company policy, declined to comment when contacted by Bloomberg News yesterday.

Finmeccanica Chief Executive Officer Giuseppe Orsi in a statement today said the chairman of SELEX Sistemi Integrati has called for an extraordinary board meeting of the unit tomorrow to “consider measures necessary to safeguard the interests of the company.”

To contact the reporters on this story: Elisa Martinuzzi in Milan at emartinuzzi@bloomberg.net; Andrew Davis in Rome at abdavis@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Ben Livesey at blivesey@bloomberg.net

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