Exploiting AI will also increase by 4% the annual NPL recovery rate per asset manager, the group said in a statement on Thursday.

Its new AI solution will be implemented in Spain in the third quarter of the year and in the rest of the group by the end of 2023, doValue told Reuters in an emailed comment.

It added it "is reasonable to expect the achievement of those efficiency targets starting from 2024."

DoValue also said it had already fully implemented in Italy a search engine based on text mining which will save the company 35-40% of the time needed to recover soured loans.

The firm manages about 120 billion euros of assets under management across Italy, Spain, Portugal, Greece and Cyprus.

(Reporting by Federica Urso, ediiting by Keith Weir)