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CLARA MOSCHINI

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Leonardo: "roller coster" on Stock Exchange

Profumo still bolted to the chair

Leonardo stock is recovering. On October 30, 2020 it reached its minimum of 4.06 euros, on November 20, 2020 it is at 5.7 euros. It has seen better times, of course (a year ago it was at 11.9 euros, for example, at the beginning of the three years of driving CEO Alessandro Profumo it was even quoted as 15.5 euros) but, given the bad times, it is recovering. In the session of Monday November 16, for example, it closed up 4.14% at € 5.482, with a maximum of € 5.506, scoring the best performance of the Ftse Mib. Over 3.7 million units changed hands in one hour of trading, compared to an average of 10 millions per session over the last 30 days. According to analysts, the performance is attributable to the note published the previous Friday, November 13, with the announcement that the US Department of Defense has exercised the option for another 36 TH-73A helicopters worth 171 million. dollars to be used in the program for the construction of the new advanced training system for the US Navy for which AgustaWestland Philadelphia is responsible. In addition, analysts say, Thales Alenia Space, a joint-venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo (33%) announced the signing of two contracts totalling approximately 180 million with the European Space Agency, which are part of two more large with a total value of 950 million (equal to almost half of the jv's turnover in one year). Equita Sim analysts analyzed the performance, arguing that, "although Leonardo's participation in the joint-venture is modest, the signal is important for recovering the profitability of the Space division including Telespazio (services for satellites 67% Leonardo and 33% Thales) which, in the first nine months of this year was at break even (consolidated at equity)". Equita Sim, it should be remembered, is the stock exchange arm of the Equita group, former Euromobiliare: the sim was purchased in 2015 by the group's management (Francesco Perilli, Fabio Deotto, Matteo Ghilotti, Stefano Lustig and Andrea Vismara) and by Alessandro Profumo, by taking over 50.5% of the private equity fund JC Flowers & Co. Profumo then became president of the sim, a position he held for the whole of 2017 when he became the CEO of Leonardo (formerly Finmeccanica). The money to pay for the purchase, he told himself then, Profumo took out by putting his hand to the liquidation received from Unicredit, the famous 40 million euros that caused a sensation and were also challenged by the Bank of Italy. For the Equita operation, Profumo made use of heavy advice provided by the business lawyer Roberto Cappelli, on behalf of the firm Gianni, OrigoniGrippo, Cappelli & PartnersAt the time, a note released to press agencies explained that the partnership between Profumo and the other managers was aimed at continuing and strengthening Equita's strategic mission as the main   independent Italian investment bank, focused on assisting Italian companies in their development'. On another note, Profumo & C. emphasized the desire to create an independent financial center that provides advisory services, with the possibility of also guaranteeing interventions in the equity of small and medium-sized client companies”. At the time, many people wondered how independent this financial center was. Today there are many who are starting to ask themselves this and other questions. First of all: Does Profumo still have ties to his ex Sim? Is it possible, someone says, that his ex-sim isn't as independent as it was advertised at the time? If so, it would be reasonable to think that behind the recent movements of the Leonardo title there are sims like Equita, right? The questions about Profumo do not end there, quite the contrary. In the light of the latest judicial events, for example, many are asking for details that would serve not a little to clarify its current situation in order to reassure public opinion and the market. Is it true, for example, that Profumo's passport has been suspended, as they say in various circles? Is it true that he suffered the seizure of the fifth of his salary due to the MPS events following the Divania crash? Is it true that he has the Leonardo group on his agenda, as some shareholders are asking, not only for the facts related to the recent first-degree conviction for the MPS events? But the question of the hundred guns now seems to be the one concerning Leonardo. How, in practice, will Profumo put Leonardo's accounts back on track?

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AVIONEWS - World Aeronautical Press Agency
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