In November 2021, CDP (Cassa Depositi e Prestiti), the Italian investment bank owned by the Ministry for the Economy and Finance and banking foundations supporting the innovation, growth and internationalisation of small, medium and large enterprises, approved the 2022-2024 Strategic Plan.
The main objectives and measures of the Plan are the following: focusing on sustainable economic growth, bridging the country’s gaps and identifying priorities for action, being close to territories and businesses, adopting funding policies by sector based on selectivity and respect for ESG criteria, promoting gender inclusion and equality, strengthening internal technical skills to attract new talent and become a centre of excellence at the service of Italy’s progress and competitiveness.
CDP identified four significant challenges to be addressed for relaunching the Italian economy over the next three years: i) climate change and ecosystem protection, ii) inclusive and sustainable growth, iii) rethinking supply chains and iv) digitisation and innovation.
These challenges correspond to ten fields of action for CDP, which will base its commitment on meeting the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development goals while also including many of the National Recovery and Resilience Plan (NRRP) missions.
Overall, over the next three years, CDP will commit funds totalling € 65 billion (+5% on the previous period), attracting € 63 billion from third parties (+27%) and activating investments totalling € 128 billion (+14%).
In detail, the operational strategy is based on three central transformational pillars:
1. Strategic and sector analyses and adoption of funding and investment policies according to international best practices. A new operating model will be introduced and based on selectivity criteria. For this reason, CDP will strive to reinforce analytical capacities and create Competence Centres specialised in thematic areas by attracting new talent: Urban development and regeneration, Natural resources, energy and environment, Transport, Social infrastructure, Innovation and digitalisation.
2. Technical advisory role and management of third-party funds (public, national and European funds), especially for public administration’s benefit, and direct investments towards high-quality projects.
3. Offering financial instruments for supporting Italy’s strategic sectors and covering every need in a company or project’s life cycle, with a strong focus on international cooperation and development finance. CDP’s action must be supplementary and complementary to other available forms of financing, inclusive and unifying towards the market.
- Loans, Collateral and Sustainability. CDP will increase its action to support infrastructure, the public administration and companies through a policy that can foster virtuous investments, in line with ESG sustainability criteria. For this purpose, CDP will boost its technical assessment capacity and enhance mechanisms that combine its own and third-party resources. Furthermore, it will ensure direct commitment to companies through its resources, helping them expand internationally and develop non-bank lending instruments.
- Equity. The 2022-2024 Strategic Plan will implement a new equity investment and management approach. On one side, there are the equity investments considered strategic, where CDP will retain its role as permanent shareholder covering infrastructure or assets of importance to the country; on the other, there are the purposeful interventions, with a commitment to growth or the stabilisation of companies in key sectors, though with an exit and capital turnover rationale. In this area, just as in Private equity and Venture capital, where the CDP Group’s commitment is expected to grow, operations must be based on the crowding-in principle, i.e. the ability to attract resources from other investors.
- Real estate. In addition to continuing its commitment to tourism, CDP will focus on social, senior, and student housing to significantly impact the territory thanks to the partnership with the bank foundations. Cooperation will also concern urban regeneration projects, targeting Southern Italy. Overall, the real estate portfolio management will follow value enhancement or direct sales criteria, according to principles of transparency and value maximisation.
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