Cassa Depositi unveils offer to Benettons for Autostrade (and joins Tim’s board) –

Cassa Depositi e Prestiti prepares to join Tim’s new board. The president of the CDP, Giovanni Gorno Tempini, one of the names indicated for the list that the telephone group board is preparing in view of the renewal. There are 25 candidates for 15 positions, of which 10 should go to the list of the board and, considering the “political” weight of the Cassa, the president will be given a safe box. The indication on the name of Gorno Tempini did not come from the Cassa, even if the reporting value does not leave much room for uncertainty. The manager was included after a last round of evaluations in the squad prepared by Tim’s president, Salvatore Rossi, who today will be submitted to the telephone group’s council to choose the 15 candidates. Given the position of Cdp as shareholder of Tim and partner of Open Fiber, the absence for Gorno of conflict profiles or possible regulatory risks has already been verified with the lawyers.

The Cassa has 10% of Tim and no representation. The new board will be appointed on March 31 and a signal from the CDP was expected, also given the imminent deadline for the filing of candidacies. Yesterday the Cassa met the board to discuss the final offer on Aspi and the pre-emption on Open Fiber. Given the evolution, the Tim dossier was not discussed. As for Open Fiber, the CDP will not exercise the pre-emption on the 50% in the hands of Enel but will continue talks with the electricity group and I fund Macquarie to go up in the majority.

On the other hand, the Autostrade dossier has been postponed to today. Yesterday the board of the Cassa prepared (but not yet approved) a binding offer but conditional on the approval of Autostrade’s economic-financial plan – the document that records the dynamics of tariffs and links them to investments on the network -, currently still to the Cipe. The plan values ​​the motorway operator between 9.2 and 9.4 billion. Positioning itself in the upper part of the price range identified by the bidders, the consortium led by Cassa Depositi (with the foreign funds Blackstone and Macquarie) intends to take over 88% of the manager. The proposal should be approved by the board of the Cassa on the same day. Atlantia will have three days to evaluate it before speaking to the board already scheduled for Friday. And it should incorporate the indemnity discount that the advisors have quantified at around 1 billion, a sum to cover the damages that could arise due to the collapse of the Morandi bridge in Genoa.

The corporate structure of the newco foresees 51% in hand to Cassa Depositi and the remaining 49% equally divided between the two funds. But it will be necessary to understand how the shareholders’ agreements will be written. Counting that the manager has 12% outside the perimeter, in the hands of institutional investors Allianz and the Chinese fund Silk Road. The amount is deemed to be discounted by the Tci fund, a 10% shareholder of Atlantia, which the manager believes is worth between 11 and 12 billion. It is likely that the board of Atlantia will elaborate an opinion to be submitted to the shareholders’ meeting, but it would not be surprising if the Draghi government – in case of no agreement – decided to re-discuss the reorganization. The feeling that the lesser negotiating power of the Five Stars could speed up the dossier but not in the imagined direction.

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