Awards for excellence - Italy
Best debt house
Best equity house
Best M&A house
The two most impressive and largest banks in Italy are IntesaBci and UniCredito Italiano. Each has been forged out of a series of mergers, leaving both with some strong franchises and also a series of management challenges. IntesaBci was born out of the merger in 1998 between Cariplo and Ambroveneto, two strong retail banks in wealthy northern Italy. Last year it acquired Banca Commerciale Italiana, the leading wholesale bank in Italy with a strong reputation among the country's leading corporates. The bank has enormous potential but has become a little bogged down in completing the BCI merger while also restructuring into a series of business divisions and away from being a holding company for still separate banks. It has also been preoccupied with trying to unify its IT systems around the old Ambroveneto technology.
UniCredito Italiano is widely credited with having the most impressive management team in Italian banking, led by former McKinsey consultant Alessandro Profumo. The bank has nimbly reinvented itself since the merger between Credito Italiano and UniCredito Holding and the acquisition of the highly successful Rolo Banca in the late 1990s.