Yes Explores Bid for Citibank Indian Assets

Yes Bank is exploring a potential bid for the Indian retail assets of Citibank, joining a list of suitors eyeing the local operations of the foreign bank that is partially exiting 13 countries. Yes Bank will look at acquiring Citi’s retail assets, including credit cards and wealth management in India, Chief Executive Prashant Kumar said.

“We would definitely explore that opportunity; I think they are running a process. Once all of that is in the public domain, we would definitely like to explore not only credit cards but also wealth management and retail business. Then, depending on our appetite, we would take a call,” he said in an interview.

Citibank India has 35 branches and serves 29 lakh retail customers, including 12 lakh bank accounts and 22 lakh credit card accounts. It has a 6 per cent market share of retail credit card spends in India. Yes Bank has a credit card base of 9,47,000, with spends at Rs 2,288 crore as on March 31.

Over the last year, Kumar has been making efforts to rebuild the bank amid challenges posed by Covid. The bank reported a 33 per cent growth in retail term deposits from a year earlier, 60 per cent growth in corporate term deposits and 50 per cent growth in current and savings accounts (Casa) in 2020-21.

While its loan book shrank 3 per cent in 2020-21, Kumar is confident of clocking a 15 per cent credit growth in 2021-22. “Even if you see this year, there would have been credit growth. It is not shown in the number because we have made accelerated provision,” said Kumar, adding that in the March quarter, the bank disbursed Rs 15,000 crore in loans, of which Rs 3,500 crore went to corporates, and the rest to retail and small business borrowers.

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