4 min read.Updated: 08 Mar 2021, 10:07 PM ISTAndy Mukherjee
New CEO Jane Fraser shouldn’t oversimplify the bank’s operations
Citigroup Inc’s new chief executive Jane Fraser is facing an Asia question handed down to her from predecessor Mike Corbat’s time: What to do about consumer banks? Of the 19 that Citi operates globally, 12 are in the Asia-Pacific region. When Corbat took over as CEO in 2012, the unit—which now also includes five smaller consumer banks in Europe, the Middle East and Africa—was pulling in half the firm’s Asia net income. Over the next seven years, the institutional clients group, which houses the corporate and investment banks, powered ahead and became twice as profitable as the stagnant consumer franchise. Some investors began to ask if it was time to exit.