US-based Citigroup says it plans to hire five additional bankers in Saudi Arabia as it prepares for an expected rise in foreign direct investment (FDI) on the Riyadh stock exchange.
The New York-headquartered lender is expanding its team in Riyadh after getting regulatory approval last month to start equities trading and custody services.
Carmen Haddad, chief country officer for Saudi Arabia, said in an interview with Arabian Business: "We've had about 14-15 people on the ground and that will grow to about 20 this year. We're very focused on equities, custody, M&A, capital market debt and equity origination, research and advisory business. We'll add a few traders and some middle office staff this year as a result of getting the permission to provide cash equity and custody services, and those should be operational in a few months."
We’re very focused on equities, custody, M&A, capital market debt and equity origination, research and advisory business."
There and back again
Citigroup was operating in Saudi Arabia from 1955 to 2004, when the bank sold its stake in Samba Financia Group. In 2017 the company received an investment-banking license, and is now seeking to regain market share amid fierce competition from HSBC and JPMorgan, in particular.
FDI in Saudi Arabia more than doubled in 2018, reaching $3.5bn. This figure marks a 110% increase on 2017 yet remains far from its peak of $85bn in 2008.
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