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Japan’s SMBC to buy Citigroup retail business for $330m

Japan’s SMBC to buy Citigroup retail business for $330m

TOKYO: Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation (SMBC) will buy Citigroup Incorporation’s Japanese retail banking operations in October for about 40 billion yen ($330 million).

The Citi operations will be merged into SMBC Trust Bank, which will let Citi’s retail customers in Japan maintain their access to the US bank’s global ATM network for at least two years after SMBC’s acquisition.

They said the new business combination will focus on selling Citi developed financial products.

The Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Incorporation unit will announce the long awaited purchase on Thursday.

Citi’s Japan consumer banking business has been hurt by weak loan demand and falling interest margins in a market where the US based lender has operated for over 100 years.

The third largest US bank said in October it was pulling out of consumer banking in 11 markets, including Japan and Egypt, as it looks to cut high costs.