Citi eyes bigger share of wealth management in India

Pedro Gonçalves
Citi eyes bigger share of wealth management in India

American lender Citi said it is eyeing a greater pie of the Indian wealth management business, concentrating both on the domestic opportunity as well as non-resident Indians (NRIs).

It has made two senior level appointments in pursuit of this: Varun Chugh was named  global market manager for the 'global India' business and Puneet Sanwalka as head of India onshore business.

The bank said several prominent Indian families have recently acquired residential and commercial real estate properties in the United Kingdom through financing from Citi Private Bank.

Quoting from a report by a consultancy, it added that India has 263,000 HNIs, representing about $1trn in wealth, while there are 16 million India-born people living outside.

"What we are witnessing is just the tip of the iceberg.  UNHW families, in general, think of wealth in a borderless way," Jyrki Rauhio, the south Asia head for Citi Private Bank, said in a statement.

On the diaspora end, the bank said Indian UNHW families are concentrated in Southeast Asia, Hong Kong, Australasia, the Gulf region, East Africa, the United Kingdom, the United States and Canada.

"The mantra of globalization is something the Indian diaspora has been practicing for centuries. We have offices and bankers across these markets and we are well-positioned to better serve this worldly and wealthy population," Rauhio added. 

"For many of these families, their business footprint is multinational and their investment appetite is equally eclectic. They are investing in overseas assets such as commercial and residential real estate, and are represented by family offices and family members in locations around the world," the statement said.