March 20, 2020 / 1:04 PM / 8 days ago

Shares in Italy's BPER soar as virus crisis drives revision in Intesa deal

FILE PHOTO: Bper bank logo is pictured downtown Milan , Italy, November 7 ,2016. REUTERS/Stefano Rellandini

MILAN (Reuters) - BPER Banca shares jumped 11% on Friday after a coronavirus crisis prompted a favorable revision in the terms of a deal agreed by Italy’s sixth-largest bank to buy assets as part of Intesa Sanpaolo’s proposed takeover of smaller rival UBI.

Intesa Sanpaolo on Thursday said it was ready to accept a lower price in the deal it had agreed with BPER to address possible antitrust issues in the takeover.

The move came after a coronavirus outbreak which has killed more people in Italy than in any other country in the world including China, crippling the economy and driving the market value of Italian banks .FTITLMS down by more than 40%.

Based on current market prices, broker Equita SIM estimated at 400 million euros - compared with 780 million euros previously - the price BPER is due to pay to buy branches and loans that will be spun off from the merged entity if the takeover is successful.

The lower price will drive a same-size reduction in the capital increase BPER plans to launch in the autumn to fund the purchase, Equita said.

Reporting by Andrea Mandalà, editing by Valentina Za

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