Sent: Thursday, August 26, 2010 5:36 PM
Subject: Let's Keep Going!
In New York, summer can be a time of year when things slow down. But as I talk to our people and visit Citi locations around the world, it is very clear to me that we have been keeping up a good pace throughout this great institution. Having held Town Halls in Mexico City, St. Petersburg, Hanoi and Singapore over the past few months, I continue to be struck by your enthusiasm and dedication. I want to share with you some of the things we have accomplished together recently.
The innovation and first-in-class service that distinguishes Regional Consumer Banking were evident across our regions. In the U.S., we announced the first-ever implementation of MasterCard inControl. It will enhance our cardholders’ experience through increased transparency, greater spending confidence, and more secure and efficient financial management – a great example of Responsible Finance at work. We opened up a world of exciting possibilities for our customers with the well-received “Stories” advertising campaign.
In Russia and Poland, a new mobile banking platform moved us closer to being the world’s Digital Bank. We teamed up with another great global brand, Virgin Money Australia, in a strategic partnership that offers customers two new credit cards and an online savings account. In Mexico, our customers made Impulsora de Fondos Banamex number one in the market, with $20 billion in managed assets and an impressive 42 percent annual growth rate. And just this week in China, Citi became the first international bank to open a full-service retail branch, complete with smart banking technology, in the Shanghai Metro.
In the area of Securities and Banking, we won new clients while strengthening existing relationships. In the U.S. Citi became a key player in one of the most closely-watched transactions when we were mandated as lead arranger and administrative agent for General Motors’ $5 billion revolving credit facility, and we will play a lead role in the Initial Public Offering. Continuing our investment in Asia Pacific and expanding our presence in a growing market, we took a seat on the Indonesian Stock Exchange and began equities brokerage operations in the country.
Citi acted as a financial advisor to South Africa media giant Naspers on the sale of its interest in Mail.ru, the leading Russian Internet communication company, and its investment in Digital Sky Technologies. Citi was also sole global coordinator and joint bookrunner on Naspers’ debut $700 million bond issue. As a joint bookrunner on the Republic of Chile’s return to the capital markets, a landmark $1.52 billion debt offering, we played a pivotal role in the country’s post-earthquake reconstruction plan.
Global Transaction Services continued to show why it is the envy of all its competitors. After a competitive review of qualified banks, BP named Citi as Paying Agent and Corporate Trustee for its $20 billion oil spill compensation fund. And we reached a significant milestone in July when Citi extended its industry-leading commercial card issuance to its 50th country, South Africa.
We also completed several divestitures in Citi Holdings, reducing its total assets by $9 billion. And the U.S. Treasury completed sale of an additional tranche of Citigroup common stock, reducing its total stake of Citi’s shares to 18 percent, and taking another step toward its stated goal of exiting its position by year end.
Going forward, there is every indication that we will remain busy on all fronts, whether it is opening new branches, issuing debt or underwriting IPOs. Our business has good balance, especially in light of our longstanding presence in the emerging markets.
You will also be pleased to know that we will continue to show the character of our company in many other ways. Over the past months, we declared a foreclosure moratorium for homeowners affected by the oil spill in the Gulf region in the U.S., made a $250,000 donation to create 1,400 new full-time jobs in Haiti’s apparel industry and launched the $100 million Citi Community Capital Fund to preserve affordable housing in New York City.
Rest assured, this is not a comprehensive list, but it does indicate how busy you have been and I appreciate your hard work. If you have been able to take some time off, I hope you feel recharged. If you haven’t done so yet, I hope you can get some time and come back refreshed so we can make the rest of 2010 just as successful as it has been so far. Let’s keep going!