The Consolidated non-financial statement covers a period during which many of our certainties have been called into question.
An unknown, invisible virus has suddenly invaded our lives, inflicted suffering and tension, upended our routines and generated a completely new situation all over the world. The contagion struck particularly hard in certain areas where our Group has the strongest presence. We acted immediately, rushing to the front lines to provide a swift response.
In terms of our organisation, health and safety, the protection of People, and even more so in supporting Communities, we have been doing our part and strive to continue to do so.
In line with our territorial positioning and characteristically local focus,we identified concrete support measures for Communities that enable households and businesses in difficulty to obtain specific moratoria on outstanding mortgages. Along with the initiatives coordinated by Cassa Centrale, the Group Banks were involved in providing specific credit facilities with dedicated funds and subsidised conditions as well as direct donations, fundraising activities and other initiatives, working on multiple fronts to ensure that the Group would contribute to meeting the needs arising throughout the country, in order to overcome this difficult situation.
And our work will continue, even in any upcoming situations that may arise.
On 31 December 2019, the first year of operations of the Cassa Centrale Banca - Credito Cooperativo Italiano Cooperative Banking Group (hereinafter, the “Group” or the “Cassa Centrale Group”) came to an end. The launch of the Group marked the end of the transitional phase of a reform process lasting nearly 4 years, which involved every part of the system, profoundly revising the roles, duties and responsibilities of the structures serving the Cooperative Credit Banks, Rural Banks and Raiffeisenkassen. This has given rise to a structure which, at the regulatory and organisational level, is unique throughout Europe.
In its first year of operations, it engaged in continuous dialogue to seek to identify the right balance between the independence of many cooperative Banks with strong roots in their Communities and the synergies arising from being part of a Group, with the gradual convergences that the search for economies of scale brings with it. Some significant examples of this are the profound reorganisation in Bank services, which took shape in early 2020 with the birth of Allitude, constant growth in volumes and the quality of the services of the subsidiaries Assicura and NEAM, and the progressive enhancement of the potential of Claris Leasing and Centrale Casa.
While maintaining a balance between the independence of the Banks and the synergies deriving from being part of a Group, we strive to enhance and further sharpen our focus on the Territories, in line with our values, performing that social function which the Constitution attributes to Cooperation.
We feel a deep responsibility to guarantee the continuity and development of the extraordinary wealth represented by Cooperative Credit, actively collaborating to improve the moral, cultural and economic conditions of our Communities, as laid out in the Articles of Association of the Group’s Cooperative Credit Banks, Rural Banks and Raiffeisenkassen. The Board of Directors, most recently appointed in early 2019, worked intensely and in full collaboration with the Management and the business structure.
In March 2020, the strategic guidelines for our Group’s development were defined, based on the following pillars:
- proximity and vicinity to the Communities, households and SMEs in the reference Territory, leveraging the widespread presence and strong local roots of the Group Banks;
- a focus on understanding needs, including by taking a proactive approach, adopting adequate instruments to support commercial processes throughout the entire customer service lifecycle;
- simplicity and convenience of the offer based on appropriate solutions and balanced products, suited to our Partners and Customers, with pricing that favours transparency and the overall profitability of the relationship over time;
- banking leadership driven towards a gradual reinforcement and extension of the Customer base in areas of lower presence, leveraging an evolving branch concept, multichannelling and innovative technological solutions.
In defining our strategic objectives, sustainability topics were also taken into consideration, as part of a path that promotes cooperative Values, a distinctive and unifying feature of the Cassa Centrale Group. In this context, several initiatives already launched have continued, as described in the Statement: first and foremost, the multiple initiatives focusing on the Territories, which in 2019 saw more than 22 thousand actions including charitable activities and sponsorships, for a total value of more than EUR 27 million.
We are a Group that strongly believes in our territorial and mutualistic vocation.
Cassa Centrale will guarantee the circularity of best practices between the socially and environmentally relevant initiatives put into place by the Banks, with a view to always best enhancing our specific features. We intend to promote concrete initiatives while spreading the culture and value of sustainability to Employees and Communities. We will do this through direct actions, such as purchasing electricity from renewable sources, and raising the awareness of our Partners and Customers: promoting investments in the sustainable segments of our NEF fund and paying particular attention to the environmental and social impact of our loans.
The focus on People - Partners, Customers and Employees - is now and will always remain at the very heart of our actions.
"We feel a deep responsibility to guarantee the continuity and development of the extraordinary wealth represented by Cooperative Credit. The new form of the Cassa Centrale - Credito Cooperativo Italiano Group confirms and reinforces our desire to work alongside our territories, and to actively cooperate with them for the improvement of the moral, cultural and economic conditions of our Communities"
Together, we have built a Group to continue to create shared wellbeing and bring an original development model to life, in which difference is a value and local identity a principle.
Declared in Art. 2 of the Articles of Association of the Group Banks, our social, cultural and economic goals signify our sustainable nature which we have linked to the Goals of Agenda 2030. Founded on values of cooperation, mutuality and local presence, we will continue to contribute towards creating the common good.
by the business
State, authorities and
The generation of economic value that is sustainable in the long term and for the territory is the Group’s primary objective as a condition necessary for remunerating all stakeholders
With the aim of ensuring a suitable offer, the Group structures and continuously updates a portfolio of products and services identified and developed in response to the principles governing Cooperative Credit.
The offering is intended for the Group Banks as well as Customer Banks, households and businesses through the services of Cassa Centrale Banca and the Group Companies.
Support for businesses, households and individuals
“The Group’s offering favours the development of the socioeconomic fabric of our country, providing differentiated and innovative banking and financial products capable of meeting the needs of customers and facing market challenges. Through a system of Banks strongly rooted in their local Territories, the Group is able to meet all of the typical needs expressed by households and businesses”.
Support for Banks
Reliability, operational efficiency, innovation: so that the Group Banks and Customer Banks can handle market challenges, we provide quality brokerage services and a broad range of innovative investment solutions consistent with customer requirements.
Care for the Customer
Firm rules, clear and defined skills and responsible conduct are the foundations for safeguarding the Customer.
In relations with Customers, less tangible elements are also fundamental, for example the transparency of contractual conditions, speed and clarity in receiving information, compliance with the conditions of privacy necessary to guarantee efficient and respectful management of their needs.
The value of shared wellbeing
We are the first Cooperative Banking Group born in Italy. We are Banks made of People, who put other People at the heart of what they do: we pay particular attention to the offer to Cooperative Partners of services that best meet their lifecycle requirements, so we can make a concrete contribution to the economic, social and cultural development of local Communities.
Roughly 23% of branches are located in Municipalities with a population of under 3,000, compared to 9% of other banks, and in 313 Municipalities the Group is the only banking presence.
Relations based on constant dialogue and active engagement with its stakeholders confirm the Group’s responsibility towards its territory of operation.
We place value on all initiatives in the Communities of which we are part, because it is from value that shared wealth and wellbeing spring forth.
Culture, training and
Promotion of the territory
and economic entities
Initiatives in favour
The environment, the most important common good
Embracing the values of Sustainability and Responsibility for us also means protecting environmental resources.
We know that to make a concrete contribution to the wellbeing of Communities, it is necessary to actively protect the environment. Our commitment includes a series of initiatives with which we intend to create and raise awareness concerning development that works in tandem with low environmental impact.
The daily work of more than 11 thousand People represents a great value for our Group: every day, with passion and spirit of collaboration, they meet the needs of Partners and Customers, building with them a relationship of trust, awareness and attention for the origins of our way of banking.
Women and Men of value, linked to their Communities,
who believe in and commit day after day to local development according to the principles of Cooperation.
Health and safety
We recognise and value the potential of our People, first and foremost protecting their health and safety at work and providing training plans, also in partnership with Universities, a fundamental channel for the hiring of young new graduates: in 2019, 300 new employees were under 30 years of age - compared to the average age of 44 years.