Colleen Barry: Sober Mario's best asset is being Silvio's opposite
The man tapped to be Italy's next premier earned the moniker "Super Mario" in the halls of the European Commission, stopping such corporate giants as GE's Jack Welch and Microsoft's Bill Gates in their competitive tracks.
Elegantly attired with a formal demeanour, Mario Monti proved his mettle as a tough negotiator when he blocked the merger of General Electric and Honeywell and levied a $500m fine against Microsoft for abusing its dominant position.
"He moves with caution and speaks with nuances. But he moves," said Carlo Guarnieri, a political scientist at the University of Bologna.