Shareholders' Meeting: statements by the Chairman and CEO

The image accompanying the News on the statements of the Shareholders' Meeting portrays the Chairman of Intesa Sanpaolo, Gianmaria Gros-Pietro, alongside the CEO Carlo Messina. They are both dressed in formal suits, the portion of a screen on which the Bank's logo is reproduced is visible behind them

On the occasion of Intesa Sanpaolo’s Ordinary Shareholders' Meeting, Chairman Gian Maria Gros-Pietro and CEO Carlo Messina celebrated the Group's remarkable achievements in 2023:

  • Record-breaking financial performance, with a Net income of €7.7 billion and a generous cash dividend of €5.4 billion, along with the highest dividend yield in Europe
  • Demonstrating a commitment to Italy's social cohesion, the Bank has pledged €1.5 billion by 2027, supported by a dedicated team of a thousand professionals
  • Customers at the heart of the Bank’s strategies, underlining their trust in its stability and technological leadership.

The Shareholders' Meeting also highlighted the Bank's unwavering dedication to environmental and social responsibility. The adoption of cutting-edge technologies is for the benefit of both customers and employees, respectful of all individuals.

These intentions are fully embodied in the 2022-2025 Business Plan, which is proceeding full-speed as the Bank transforms into one of Europe’s most efficient, modern, low-risk and sustainably profitable financial institutions.

These achievements are a testament to the hard work and professionalism of the Bank’s people, as well as the trust placed in Intesa Sanpaolo by its customers and local communities. 

Find out more on Full year 2023 results.


Distinguished Shareholders,

the year 2023 was characterised by considerable complexity at economic, geopolitical and social level. Europe and the US had to deal with inflation rates persistently overshooting targets, which was countered by monetary policy tightening. Central banks appear to have achieved their goal of starting to reduce inflation rates without triggering a recession. Despite the global challenges, 2023 turned out better than expected. The major advanced economies were resilient, although they remained on the verge of stagnation.
On the geopolitical front, the ongoing conflicts between Russia and Ukraine and in the Middle East, the competition between China and the US, and the tensions in Africa and Latin America have intensified the trend towards fragmentation of the globalisation process, fuelling “defensive” industrial policies and the growing emergence of trade blocs.
Despite the challenges, the Italian economy has been remarkably resilient and responsive. From 2019 to date, Italy’s GDP growth has outpaced that of Germany, France, and Spain, thanks to its geographic and sectoral specialisations, which are its key strengths. The 2023 performance fell short of 1%, affected by the energy and inflationary shock, combined with the impacts of monetary tightening and less generous construction bonuses. In 2024, growth is expected to pick up in the second half of the year, driven by the reversal of monetary policies in the US and the Eurozone, an improvement in household disposable income, a recovery in global demand, and an increase in spending flows from the NRRP. Overall, the annual performance of Italian GDP is not expected to differ significantly from 2023.
In an environment of uncertainty, 2024 poses significant challenges, including the evolution and risk of escalation of current conflicts, the results of major upcoming elections, and structural challenges such as climate change, growing inequalities, the pervasiveness of Artificial Intelligence, and population ageing. These issues are tied to the future of human civilisation on the planet, the solution to which requires the transition to new economic and social models that demand a collective effort from everyone - governments, institutions, citizens and businesses - at both a global and local scale. In this changing landscape, Intesa Sanpaolo is fully conscious of the key role played by the financial system and is committed to growing in harmony with Italy and the other countries in which it operates, seeking not only to maintain its leadership in the international financial sector but also to promote social equity.
The world population, currently 8 billion, will continue to grow, fuelling tensions and forcing change. Intesa Sanpaolo will address these challenges by contributing to the energy transition of customers and communities, fostering innovation and the digitalisation of the production systems for goods and services, and striving to ensure that no one is left behind. In 2023, Intesa Sanpaolo consolidated its position as the top bank in Italy, cementing its status as frontrunner in the global credit industry. These results were achieved thanks to the work and professionalism of our people, as well as the trust placed in us by our customers and the local communities with whom we have forged strong and lasting ties.
The Bank’s environmental and social vocation is permanently embedded in its DNA. The adoption of cutting-edge technologies is conceived for the benefit of our customers and the people working at the Bank; it is respectful of individuals, who remain at the core of our actions. This strategic and value-driven vision is embodied in the 2022-2025 Business Plan, which is proceeding at full pace in order to complete the Bank’s transformation into one of the most efficient, modern, low-risk, and sustainably profitable institutions.
Intesa Sanpaolo contributes to the competitive growth of the countries where it operates, directing its investments towards companies committed to the energy transition and open to innovation. The Bank has subscribed to the Net Zero Alliances with the goal of achieving net zero emissions by 2050. Our commitment to sustainability is expressed through various initiatives such as support for green projects, the promotion of the circular economy, Green Mortgages, S-Loan products dedicated to small and medium-sized enterprises to finance projects aimed at improving their sustainability profile, and Digital Loans aimed at improving the digitalisation of companies, to name but a few.
In 2023, a year when household spending capacity declined significantly, Intesa Sanpaolo strengthened its focus on the “S = Social” factor, committing itself to combating social inequality and promoting financial, social, educational and cultural inclusion. Concrete examples of the Bank’s efforts in this regard include the negotiation of the renewal of the National banking-sector labour contract, with the proposal of suitable financial compensation for employees of the sector; the distribution of an interim dividend to shareholders and the intention to release part of the excess capital, subject to the approval of the ECB and the Shareholders’ Meeting; the expansion of the food and shelter programme for people in need and the social lending, social housing and urban regeneration initiatives; and the establishment of a new organisational unit, based in Brescia, called “Intesa Sanpaolo for Social Impact”.
Our commitment to ESG continues to be recognised internationally, as reflected by Intesa Sanpaolo’s continued inclusion among the top 100 most sustainable listed companies in the world, in the Corporate Knights ranking. To achieve this result, the ESG governance system was further strengthened, introducing mechanisms to ensure consistency and monitoring of environmental objectives. The ESG regulatory guidelines have become part of our credit framework, also in alignment with the European taxonomy, focusing on customer needs and opportunities in relation to the circular economy and sustainability. Technology is a further driver of our competitiveness and a key factor that contributes significantly to Intesa Sanpaolo’s earnings performance. Examples include Isytech, a new cloud-native technology platform, Isybank, the Group’s digital bank with a business model featuring a cost/income ratio of less than 30%, and Fideuram Direct, a digital Wealth Management platform for Private Banking, in addition to the use of Artificial Intelligence, with the adoption of Generative AI solutions and the goal of creating 150 Apps over the Plan period. The Bank has received significant recognition for its efforts, including Intesa Sanpaolo Mobile’s rating, for the second consecutive year, as the best banking app in the world in terms of features and customer experience by the US research institute Forrester.
Intesa Sanpaolo’s success lies in its people and its guiding values. The Bank is committed to respecting all individuals in their expression of identity and diversity and it was this commitment that led to its inclusion for the sixth consecutive year in the Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index 2023, obtaining a score well above the average of the global financial sector and of Italian companies. It also ranked as first bank in Europe, and was the only one in Italy to be recognised, in the Refinitiv Global Diversity and Inclusion Index 2023 among the top 100 companies for diversity and inclusion. Lastly, another testament to the Bank’s excellent reputation is its recognition as a Top Employer 2024 for the third consecutive year by the Top Employers Institute.
The results achieved confirm the success of the strategy pursued so far. The economic value generated in 2023 – 25.9 billion euro – was distributed as follows: 80% to stakeholders, of which 32% to the people that work for us, 22% to Shareholders, and the remainder to suppliers, the government, entities, institutions and communities. The Bank has chosen a low-risk profile, both in terms of assumption of risks and their valuation in the financial statements, as it recognises the importance of the trust placed in it by households to protect their savings and of its commitment made to businesses. This is why Intesa Sanpaolo will continue to excel in risk containment, focusing on credit quality, by keeping its capital ratios high and maintaining a strong liquidity position.
For 2023, in consideration of a Group consolidated net income of 7,724 million euro and a Parent Company net income of 7,292 million euro, a proposal is being made to the Ordinary Shareholders’ Meeting to distribute cash dividends for a total of 5,408 million euro, which, taking into account the interim dividend of 2,629 million euro paid last November, corresponding to a unit dividend of 14.40 euro cents, results in a proposal to distribute a remaining dividend of 2,779 million euro, corresponding to a unit dividend of 15.20 euro cents. The total proposed dividend per share for 2023 is therefore 29.60 euro cents.
In addition, a buy-back of own shares for annulment is being proposed for an amount equal to around 55 basis points of the Common Equity Tier 1 ratio as at 31 December 2023, to be launched in June 2024, subject to approvals from the ECB and the Shareholders’ Meeting, as a result of which shareholders, without having to make any additional investment, will see their share of Intesa Sanpaolo’s total dividends increase.

Gian Maria Gros-Pietro


Today, we presented our shareholders with Intesa Sanpaolo's strongest financial results yet, reaffirming the Bank's top-tier position across Europe in terms of solidity, earnings potential, and ESG profile.

Our strength lies in several key pillars: the well-established commercial leadership of our divisions serving housedholds and businesses; the significant component of Wealth Management and Protection; our technologically advanced digital offerings; the efficient management of our international activities; and our status as a “Zero NPL” Bank.

In 2023, our net income reached €7.7 billion, with the cash allocated to our shareholders – as approved by our Shareholders’ Assembly – standing at a substantial €5.4 billion. Furthermore, we will execute a share buyback of €1.7 billion starting in June.

Our bank leads Europe in terms of dividend yield. It’s worth noting that around 40% of dividends go to Italian families and to our shareholder foundations. This enables significant social interventions in their respective communities. The total allocated to them totals €2.2 billion from the 2023 net income alone.

Direct and indirect taxes incurred in 2023 totaled €4.6 billion, a €1.4 billion increase versus 2022, meaning that Intesa Sanpaolo's results provided significant support to the public budget.

Moreover, medium and long-term credit we disbursed in Italy surpassed €40 billion in 2023. In the same year,  we helped 3,600 companies resume normal operations.

At the heart of our strategies and growth potential lie our customers. Their trust in the Bank's stability and technological leadership, along with their strong relationships with our professionals for credit and consultancy services, are paramount. Our priority is to listen attentively to their needs.

We are an institution at the service of the country: in addition to the €1 billion allocated during the 2018-2021 period, we have pledged an additional €1.5 billion by 2027, supported by a thousand dedicated professionals from the Bank. This is Italy’s primary program for social cohesion, aimed at fostering a fairer society through tangible and lasting initiatives.

Technological innovation is paramount to our success: our new native cloud technological platform, isytech, with IT investments of €2.8 billion and some 1,550 IT specialists already onboard; isybank, the Group’s digital bank, is poised to attract around one million customers by 2025; Fideuram Direct, our digital Wealth Management platform for Private Banking, will serve 150,000 customers by 2025; and artificial intelligence, with around the deployment of 150 use cases and 300 specialists by the end of our 2022-2025 Business Plan.

In this context, artificial intelligence is one of the most important development assets of Intesa Sanpaolo Business Plan. We are streamlining processes and crafting software ranging from investment assessment to service enhancement and cybersecurity.

However, the integration of AI must always consider the human element; as we embrace new technologies, we are committed to ensuring meticulous oversight, maximum security, and user-friendly experiences for both our People and our customers. Through AI, we aim to enhance our operations while safeguarding employment. New jobs and career paths will emerge within our organization; our people must remain our core strength. We view innovation as a great opportunity, benefiting both the Bank and every person who works here.

Intesa Sanpaolo has been at the forefront of integrating ESG policies and indicators in its way of banking, earning the distinction of being the leading Impact Bank worldwide. We proudly stand as the only Italian bank listed in the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices. We rank first in Europe and second globally in the Corporate Knights Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World Index 2024. And we lead among banks of comparable size in the Sustainalytics ratings.

We are adding new financing for a total of around €76 billion to the resources allocated by the National Recovery and Resilience Plan 2021-2026 earmarked for the green economy, the circular economy and the energy transition. In 2023 alone, we disbursed approximately €1.7 billion in Green Mortgages and €5.6 billion for companies committed to progressively embracing a circular economic-production model. Moreover, between 2022 and 2023, we issued 8 green and social bonds totaling €7.8 billion.

Our credit strategies incorporate ESG criteria, with approximately €18.1 billion allocated in 2023.

Our success is the result of the quality of our People. The important organizational changes recently adopted by our Group mark a generational handover to new talents in key positions, supported by seasoned individuals with extensive experience in high-level roles within the organization. At the same time, we are making significant strides in our ongoing work to empower female talent. As we look ahead, we approach the future with a strong, cohseive Group, poised to achieve further successes for the betterment of our country's real and social economies.

Carlo Messina