BPI 'interested' to bid for Citibank's Philippine consumer business

Bruce Rodriguez, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 22 2021 05:07 PM

MANILA - The Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) is "interested" in bidding for the consumer and retail businesses of Citibank Philippines after the banking giant announced its exit from the country, BPI's new president and CEO TG Limcaoco said Thursday.

"We have always been admirers of the Citibank retail business. It is an excellent franchise and for the longest time, we have always looked at it but we never believed that Citibank would ever give up on the Philippines," said Limcaoco who succeeded former BPI president Cezar Consing. 

"Most likely, we will be interested, to be honest. It's a great business...I think when you look at our capital ratios, we have sufficient capital. I don't know what the ticket size would be but I suspect we should have sufficient capital to be able to fund it internally," he added.

The Citigroup earlier said it would exit in 13 international consumer banking markets, including the Philippines, to focus its business on wealth management and in countries where its consumer banking business is strong, a report said.

Citibank said this would not have an immediate impact on its operations in the Philippines, where it has been present for over 100 years.

The US banking giant also announced that it would still keep its wholesale banking operations in the country.

Citibank Philippines is the 12th largest lender in the Philippines in terms of assets, according to the latest data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas.

-- with a report from Agence France-Presse

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