The material on this site is for financial institutions, professional investors and their professional advisers. It is for information only. Please read our Terms & Conditions, Privacy Policy and Cookiesbefore using this site. Please see our Subscription Terms and Conditions.

All material subject to strictly enforced copyright laws. © 2022 Euromoney, a part of the Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC.

Citi’s simplicity pays off in Latin America

It is one thing to simplify a business plan but quite another to execute it. Nevertheless, Citi appears to be on the verge of making its new simple approach, well, simple.

For a truly global bank, it is one thing to decide upon a new, simpler strategy. It is quite another to implement it. Internal politics, established practices and vested interests tend to react to stringent cuts to entangled operations and networks of businesses and subsidiaries.

So Citi’s execution of its new business model in Latin America is notable. Its acknowledgement that it was over-extended in the region – with too many retail banks operating in small but competitive markets – led to a succession of disposals. The sale of consumer operations in Honduras in 2014, was followed by disposals in Nicaragua and Peru in 2015, Cost Rica, Panama, Guatemala and El Salvador in 2016 and Argentina and Brazil in 2017. 

The sale of Citi’s Colombian bank at the end of January this year left Citi with just one exception – Mexico – and it is an easy qualification for Jane Fraser, chief executive of Citi in Latin America since April 2015, to explain.

“It’s down to scale,” she says, simply. “In some of those markets, we had a 1% or 2% market share. In Mexico, we have 21%. That’s the difference. It was a case of asking ourselves where should we be deploying our capital, investment and resources to get the best returns.”

You have reached premium content. Please log in to continue reading.

Read beyond the headlines with Euromoney

For over 50 years, our readers have looked to Euromoney to stay informed about the issues that matter in the international banking and financial markets. Find out more about our different levels of access below.


Unlimited access to and

Expert comment, long reads and in-depth analysis interviews with senior finance professionals

Access the results of our market-leading annual surveys across core financial services

Access the results of our annual awards, including the world-renowned Awards for Excellence

Your print copy of Euromoney magazine delivered monthly

£73.75 per month

Billed Annually


Unlimited access to and, including our top stories, long reads, expert analysis, and the results of our annual surveys and awards

Sign up to any of our newsletters, curated by our editors


Already a user?