Fortress Investment Group is to acquire a significant portion of a EUR17.7 billion portfolio of non-performing Italian loans from UniCredit.
At closing, the UniCredit transaction will represent the largest ever non-performing loan (NPL) transaction in Europe.
Fortress began investing in Italian loans and loan servicing in 2000, with its investment in Italfondiario, which was subsequently transformed from a mortgage bank into a specialised loan management company.
Fortress’s other major transactions include its acquisition in 2005 of EUR13 billion in NPLs from Intesa banking group, and in 2015 the acquisition of specialised servicer UniCredit Credit Management Bank (renamed doBank).
In total, not including the newly announced UniCredit transaction, Fortress and its affiliates have acquired approximately EUR22 billion of NPLs in Italy since 2000. By combining doBank with Italfondiario, Fortress has also created the largest independent special servicer in Italy, with approximately EUR83 billion of combined loans under management as of 30 June 2016, over seven times the size of the next largest competitor.