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UniCredit aims to significantly increase profits

UniCredit aims to significantly increase profits

The main Italian bank and Austrian bank UniCredit intend to significantly increase profits in the coming years through lower costs and higher profits. On Thursday, the bank announced that the surplus should rise to more than 4.5 billion euros by 2024. For the current year, the bank expects just over 3.3 billion euros. Moreover, the bank wants to hire new employees, but also wants to eliminate jobs.

“This plan is not only short-term, but also prepares us for long-term success and stability, beyond 2024,” said Andrea Orsel, president of UniCredit, who has been in office since April. “I am proud to lead UniCredit to the next stage of growth for all of our shareholders and know we will win the right way,” he added.

The bank’s profit is expected to rise by about 1 billion euros to more than 17 billion euros, while the expense ratio is expected to fall by 6 percentage points to 50 percent. Turning this means costs should fall by about half a billion euros to 8.5 billion euros. In addition, the shareholders promised to distribute at least 16 billion euros through cash dividends and share buybacks between 2021 and 2024.

The amount of planned cost savings to be achieved through potential job cuts remains unclear. At a press conference on Thursday, Orcel did not want to comment in detail, as the bank is currently in talks with unions. “Of course there is a reduction, but so is the number of conscription,” Orcel said.

He wants to increase the number of employees, especially in the field of information technology, but also in business with wealthy clients. However, he wants to simplify management and branches. “Digitization is at the core of our strategy,” she said. UniCredit should become a truly digital bank. In the years 2022 to 2024, the Institute intends to invest a total of 2.8 billion euros with a clear priority for digitization.

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In net terms, a total of 1,500 new jobs will be created in the 13 countries in which UniCredit operates in the years 2022 to 2024: 900 new jobs are planned in Italy, about 200 in Germany, and 300 in Central and Eastern Europe, including Austria. Also, as well as 100 “control functions”. In addition, 2,100 new employees will be built into the public domain of digital and data.

At the beginning of December, financial news agency Bloomberg reported that about 3,000 more jobs were at risk at UniCredit – according to Bloomberg information, about half of the job cuts will be made at the German branch of HypoVereinsbank.

Orcel does not rule out future acquisitions. He explained that they had to fit in with the bank’s strategy. In October, UniCredit’s takeover of Italian crisis bank Monte dei Paschi di Siena failed. The Italian state took a majority in the institute, which has been in crisis for years, in 2017, but has to give up its stake by the end of the year at the behest of the European Union. According to Bloomberg, the government and UniCredit could not agree on another capital injection for Monte dei Paschi.

Italian trade unions reacted positively to Austria’s parent bank UniCredit’s new development plan on Thursday. “For the first time there is a real plan to revitalize the group, a growth plan based on strong and sustainable economic returns, and not just a short-term perspective,” said Lando Maria Celoni, President of First Abu Dhabi Bank.

“The plan presented today by Unicredit CEO Andrea Orcel is a plan of action that represents a clear departure from the group’s previous leadership, which was disastrous to say the least and which we have always rejected across the board,” added Silioni. As far as possible dismissals are concerned, the concept that labor unions support in all work plans always applies, according to which there should be one hiring for every two voluntary departures.

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The Milan Stock Exchange also received a positive response through the new development plan. Bait Al Mal shares posted a nearly 10 percent increase in the early afternoon. In the morning, the newspaper was temporarily suspended from circulation.