Rome

Finmeccanica says jobs won't be lost in ansaldo sales

Company tells senate operation is geared to generate cash flow

Finmeccanica says jobs won't be lost in ansaldo sales

(ANSA) - Rome, August 1 - Selling Ansaldo Energia and Ansaldo STS will not lead to job cuts in these businesses, Giuseppe Orsi, CEO of parent company Finmeccanica said during audience Wednesday in the Italian Senate. Eventual sales of Ansaldo STS, a leading producer of signaling-systems for the rail transport industry, and Ansaldo Energia, a player in nuclear power, "will not lead, based on our approach, to either job losses - on the contrary - or to technology loss," Orsi said during the audience. Orsi also noted that the group wasn't generating enough cash flow to be able to sustain an investment grade rating. "The relationship between cash generation and debt does not pass the threshold required for investment grade". However, he pointed out that the decision to sell the Ansaldo units isn't based on the need "to generate cash," rather, a consequence of the eventual sales. "The motivation [for the sales]," Orsi said during the hearings, "are of a strategic nature". Orsi also pointed out that Finmeccanica remains on track to generate some one billion euros in cash from disposals this year, including from the rail operations. Stock-listed Finmeccanica, once one of the star's of Italian industry, has been battered by the ongoing economic crisis and by a corruption scandal last year which led to the resignation of its then chairman and chief executive, Pierluigi Guarguaglini. Last year the company reported a 2.3 billion euro loss on 17.3 billion euros in revenues as charges related to losses in several of its programs weighed on the bottom line.

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