Cross-border networks boost resilience and food security
Synergies facilitate the sharing of knowledge and best practices between regions, industries and cultures.
Recent global events have highlighted the growing significance of resilient supply chains, particularly across borders. Creating and maintaining synergies is crucial for this.
With its international network of banks, Intesa Sanpaolo can support companies in sustaining the short-term needs of their international suppliers and facilitate new international partnerships.
Effective cross-border synergy can also boost the sharing of knowledge and best practices between regions, industries, and cultures, says Giuseppe Ferraro, head of the corporate and SME department at Intesa Sanpaolo’s International Subsidiary Banks Division (ISBD): “This exchange of ideas and expertise enables companies to adapt quickly, innovate and stay ahead of the competition, enhancing their resilience and mitigating the risks of disruption by geopolitical events, trade disputes or natural disasters.”
Agricultural sector opportunities
The agricultural sector represents a significant part of the backbone of ISBD economies, accounting for more than €100bn in Gross Value Added (GVA) in its foreign regions, and growing at a double-digit annual rate over the past five years. This growth is expected to be sustained over the coming years.
ISBD Banks and Banca dei Territori offer comprehensive financial solutions to corporate and SME clients, enabling them to navigate cross-border challenges effectively and ensure the continuity of their supply chains when maximising this growth.
The international network – which includes 11 commercial banks operating in 12 countries – promotes dedicated cross-country product offerings and fosters institutional dialogue among governments and international financial institutions.
"Today, we see significant shifts shaping agriculture, driven by several macroeconomic and technology trends, from market consolidation to the need for sustainable sources and technology. As a bank, we feel the urgency to support corporates and SMEs in leading a transformation towards higher economic resilience, improved livelihoods and food security."
Giuseppe Ferraro, head of the corporate and SME department at Intesa Sanpaolo’s International Subsidiary Banks Division
To this end, the bank supports agribusiness companies in Central and Eastern European countries and Egypt, via a wide range of dedicated solutions from green financing for more sustainable production to complex financing to support growth plans.
The Balkans is an important region for ISBD. One of the latest joint events between ISBD banks and Banca dei Territori was the banks’ presence at the International Agricultural Fair in Novi Sad, Serbia, the most important agribusiness event in Southeast Europe. The event was attended by around 140,000 visitors, and agribusiness clients from Italy and Serbia were able to connect, establish collaborations and exchange best practice.
Export expansion and diversification opportunities
Trade relations between ISBD geographies and Italy currently exceed €50bn annually in import-export flows, with infra-ISBD trade flows of €32bn and between ISBD geographies and Italy of around €19bn.
Moreover, there are more than 2,000 Italian clients with a presence in ISBD regions. “The Italian territory offers significant opportunities for outside businesses due to its strategic location, robust industrial base and specialised expertise in certain sectors,” says Anna Roscio, head of Intesa Sanpaolo's corporate sales and marketing department, Banca dei Territori Division.
ISBD territories present significant potential for Italian businesses in terms of export expansion and diversifying sources of supply. These territories have highly dynamic economies with key sectors such as agribusiness, automotive, energy, manufacturing and tourism, with substantial prospects for collaboration, investment and market entry.
“ISBD economies are projected to outpace Italy's growth rates,” says Ferraro, “presenting significant potential for Italian businesses in terms of export expansion, currently valued at €17bn annually, as well as opportunities for diversifying sources of supply.”
Intesa Sanpaolo follows SMEs from Italy and within the Italian territory. Its relationship managers are supported by about 20 specialists in internationalisation and 200 foreign development specialists to provide SME clients with the best possible advice and solutions to market problems.
The future opportunities are promising. “The Italian agrifood industry has always excelled in exports, with a strong international standing,” Roscio says.
"With these synergies between the ISBD banks and Banca dei Territori, we are developing further opportunities and growth for both Italian and foreign customers in new markets."
Anna Roscio, head of Intesa Sanpaolo's corporate sales and marketing department, Banca dei Territori Division