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Citi to exit UK retail market

Citi to exit UK retail market

Citi is shuttering its UK retail operations to focus on wealth management services for its wealthiest clients.

"This proposal would enable Citi to focus on clients requiring comprehensive advice on managing their wealth and would benefit from Citi's key strengths in private banking and investment services," says the bank in statement. "Clients of Citi's UK retail bank who meet this profile would be invited to make use of Citi's private banking services, where they would enjoy the benefits of a broader product range and more bespoke service, including transaction banking."

If implemented, clients who don't match the profile will see their accounts closed as the bank winds down operations in 2023.

Citi's UK retail bank is small, comprising a single branch at its Emea headquarters in Canary Wharf.

"Citi has begun the process of collectively consulting with employees of its UK retail bank in more detail about the proposal," says the bank. "No final decision can be taken until that process concludes."

While rivals JPMorgan and Goldman make big bets on new digital banks in key territories, including the UK, Citi has been actively moving away from global consumer banking, selling off retail operations in Mexico, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam.

Comments: (2)

Ketharaman Swaminathan
Ketharaman Swaminathan - GTM360 Marketing Solutions - Pune 23 September, 2022, 12:03Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

India, too, to add to UK, Mexico, ...

Vladimir Dimitroff
Vladimir Dimitroff - Senior Executives Forum - London 25 September, 2022, 14:43Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

Inviting Retail clients with potential to join Private Banking is a good move (they've apparently done their segmentation analytics) - but is a one-off source for customer (and AUM) acquisition. After the closure they will lose this perpetual inflow of upwardly-mobile, migrating customers (and their wealth).

Traditional acquisition strategies (prospecting, marketing lead generation and referrals) have worked in the last 200 years, but are no longer enough in the digital age. Just ask any private bank which does not have a retail sister or parent in the group - growing the base (even staying wehre you are) has become a tough game.

If growth is not an objective (seriously? Which American company doesn't have it as a top priority?) - then Citi can focus on retention and keeping the wealth 'in the family' during the massive generational transition already under way. Good luck in staying wehre they are!

Alternatively they could opt to minimise costs (and losses) form retail operations, but keep them - even expand like their other US brethren, to cast a wider net for profitable private clients from the segmentsbelow?