1Q23 results: statement by CEO Carlo Messina
As Intesa Sanpaolo published its first quarter 2023 financial results, CEO Carlo Messina commented on the Group’s ability to generate sustainable profitability – thanks to a diversified and resilient business model – even in years in which the banking sector has faced very significant challenges.
In his statement, Messina also devoted ample space to Intesa Sanpaolo’s initiatives to address growing social inequality and the Group’s strong commitment to ESG:
“Intesa Sanpaolo is at the top of the banking sector in Europe and plays a uniquely important role in the Italian economy, to the benefit of all stakeholders”, says the CEO.
“The start to 2023 was particularly positive for Intesa Sanpaolo: we confirmed our ability to generate sustainable profitability even in complex environments, with a net income of almost €2 billion.
“Over the years, our Bank has developed a diversified and resilient business model that has proved successful; this is thanks also to its ability to significantly improve credit quality and to manage operating costs with flexibility and efficiency, to building a capital base over time that is well above the required levels. We achieved this even in years in which the banking sector has faced very significant challenges. The unique model developed over the years by our Bank – with a traditional strength in commercial banking and a prominent position in wealth management – allows us to benefit from the current context, characterized by rising interest rates, and at the same time will ensure resilience and profitability in future scenarios of falling interest rates.
“Thanks to all this, Intesa Sanpaolo is at the top of the sector in Europe and plays a uniquely important role in the Italian economy, to the benefit of all stakeholders.
“In the first quarter, the growth in net interest revenues drove an increase net income, consequently the accrued dividends totaled €1.4 billion, of which approximately 40% go directly to Italian households and to the charitable foundations that are our shareholders, allowing them to carry out important social initiatives in their local communities.
“Direct and indirect taxes generated totaled €1.4 billion, with an increase of around €300 million versus the first quarter of 2022, thus increasing the benefit to the public budget attributable to Intesa Sanpaolo's financial results.
“The idea of increased taxation on bank profits is under discussion in Italy, related to banks’ growing net interest income as the ECB increases interest rates. We will respect any decision made by the Government. At the same time, I hope that any additional levies, should new tax rules be applied, will be used to deal with the country's main social emergency – the growth of inequality – by adopting measures to favor those who are in greatest need.
“The amount received in the quarter by the People who work at Intesa Sanpaolo was €1.6 billion; in 2022, we made an extraordinary contribution of €1,000 to our People (excluding executives) to help deal with the increased cost of living, for a total of around €80 million. We are ready to consider new interventions should the need arise.
“Medium and long-term lending in Italy in the quarter was €10 billion; over 900 companies were helped to overcome momentary difficulties and return to normal activity in the first quarter alone, thus saving jobs.
“We are aware of the strong impact that inflation is having on households; for this reason, in 2022 we have allocated €30 billion to businesses and households, giving them the possibility to suspend or remodulate mortgages and loans, granting loans at subsidized rates and allowing zero-interest installments. This confirms the central role played by the Bank in the real economy. Our program to support the implementation of the NRRP amounts to over €400 billion. The significant resources made available to the country are possible thanks to our solidity, our profitability and the professionalism of our people.
“We have strengthened our initiatives to tackle inequalities and foster financial, social, educational and cultural inclusion, with €10.5 billion for social lending and urban regeneration between 2022 and Q1 2023; we also expanded the food and shelter program for people in need with around 24.3 million interventions between 2022 and the first quarter of 2023.
“We remain committed to initiatives to promote employability such as the "Youth and Work" program aimed at training and providing access to the Italian job market for over 3,000 young people. At the same time, support for inclusive education remains an area in which we are at the forefront with a strengthening of partnerships with the main Italian universities and schools. We are participating in "Futura", the new program promoted by Save the Children, Forum Disuguaglianze e Diversità and Yolk, to combat female educational poverty and early school leaving.
“We gave further impetus to our social housing program with the aim of promoting 6,000-8,000 housing solutions, leveraging the skills of leading players in the sector, including through the creation of a new dedicated Impact Platform, to give life to new important initiatives.
“In 2023, Intesa Sanpaolo’s Charitable Fund will grant €20 million to third sector entities to counter difficult situations made even more serious by the health, economic and social crises of recent years. In the past five years, the Charitable Fund has granted €71 million to over 4,000 projects.
“Intesa Sanpaolo is the #1 bank in Europe, the #2 in the world and the only one in Italy included in the Refinitiv Global Diversity and Inclusion Index 2022 among the 100 best companies for diversity and inclusion.
“The launch of our new digital bank Isybank, with nearly 400 specialists, is expected by the summer. The strengthening of digital skills in the Bank's core business continues decisively. We continue to invest in growth levers, especially in technology.
“Now in its second year, execution of the 2022-2025 Business Plan is in full swing with all key industrial initiatives well underway.
“The solid and positive results of the first three months of the year enable us to increase the 2023 net income guidance to €7 billion. This year we will distribute €5.8 billion to our shareholders, including the dividend to be paid in May, the second tranche of the buyback completed in April, and the interim dividend to be paid in November. These are important resources for our shareholders, but also for the country's economy. Thanks to the prospect of greater profitability, we will further accelerate initiatives in favor of those facing particular social hardship.
“The professional quality of our People has been and remains the key factor in achieving solid and sustainable results that favor all stakeholders: our thanks go to them.”
5 May 2023
Quarterly results and 2022 – 2025 Business Plan
The record start in this quarter, says Carlo Messina, allows us to raise Net income guidance for the year to €7 billion.
The CEO confirms that this year Intesa Sanpaolo will be able to distribute €5.8 billion to shareholders considering the dividend paid in May, the second tranche of the buyback completed in April, and the interim dividend to be paid in November.
Direct and indirect taxes generated by the growth in revenues totaled €1.4 billion, with an increase of around €300 million versus the first quarter of 2022, thus increasing the benefit to the public budget attributable to Intesa Sanpaolo's financial results.
Furthermore, implementation of the 2022-2025 Business Plan is proceeding at full speed, with key industrial initiatives well underway, including Isybank, the new digital bank of Intesa Sanpaolo, to be launched by the summer.
Initiatives to fight inequality and ESG commitment
As part of the Group's social initiatives, CEO Messina mentions the €10.5 billion disbursed for social credit and urban regeneration between 2022 and the first quarter of this year, and the recent increase to €20 million of the endowment of the Group’s Charitable Fund.
Intesa Sanpaolo has made very significant resources available to the country, confirming its role as a reference point for the real economy, at a time when inflation is having a strong impact on households and businesses.
- “Medium and long-term lending in Italy in the quarter was €10 billion; over 900 companies were helped to overcome temporary difficulties and return to normal activity in the first quarter alone, thus saving jobs".
To combat inequality, Intesa Sanpaolo has launched numerous projects including:
- “Youth and Work”, aimed at training and giving access to the Italian labor market to over 3,000 young people.
- “Futura”, the new program to combat female educational poverty and early school leaving, promoted together with Save the Children, Forum Disuguaglianze e Diversità, and Yolk.
Confirming Intesa Sanpaolo's strong commitment on all ESG issues, Messina recalled that Intesa Sanpaolo is the #1 bank in Europe, the #2 in the world and the only one in Italy included in the 100 best companies for diversity and inclusion in the Refinitiv Global Diversity and Inclusion Index.
Last updated 5 May 2023 at 13:30:42