BAML Italy head gets ECB nod for appointment at Monte dei Paschi
LONDON – The European Central Bank has given a preliminary nod to the possible appointment of Marco Morelli, head of Bank of America Merrill Lynch in Italy, as chief executive of ailing lender Monte dei Paschi di Siena BMSP.MI, a source close to the matter said.
If confirmed the ECB’s informal green light, first reported by Ansa news wire, would help pave the way for a swift succession at the helm of Italy’s third biggest bank, whose chief executive Fabrizio Viola agreed to step down on Thursday.
The bank needs to move quickly to implement an emergency rescue plan, which includes a capital increase of up to 5 billion euros ($5.6 billion), and avert the risk of being wound down.
Monte dei Paschi declined to comment.
The ECB and Morelli, who was Monte dei Paschi’s chief financial officer before leaving the Tuscan bank in 2010, were not immediately available for comment.
The source said head hunters Egon Zehnder, appointed by Monte dei Paschi for the CEO selection process, would give the results of its survey of potential candidates to the lender on Monday, before Chairman Massimo Tononi travels to Frankfurt for meetings with the ECB.
The formal appointment is likely to take place towards the middle of week, a second source said. -Reuters