Citi’s Mexico unit set to split off by late 2024 -local media

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) -Citigroup’s Mexican retail unit, known as Banamex, is set to split off from its parent by the second half of 2024, the lender’s Mexico head, Manuel Romo, told local media on Thursday.

The retail unit should then begin the process of going public in 2025, Romo said.

Citi’s Mexico operation did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.

Earlier this year, Citi scrapped a $7 billion sale of the unit, surprising investors.

New York-based Citi had been in talks with Mexican billionaire German Larrea’s Grupo Mexico to sell the unit, with sources telling Reuters the two sides had been close to a deal.

The Mexican government’s interference in Grupo Mexico’s operations – expropriating part of one of the company’s rail lines – and demands regarding the sale led the two sides to abandon the deal, sources said.

After the sale fell through, Citi said it would list Banamex.

Citi’s corporate and investment banking operation will remain in the country under the name Citi Mexico.

“We’re making progress in a timely manner in the separation,” Romo said, according to both Forbes Mexico and La Jornada. “So that by the second half of 2024, the split between Banamex and Citi Mexico is complete,” he added.

The executive floated the possibility of Banamex’s listing in either of Mexico’s two stock exchanges, and did not rule out the possibility of listing in another country.

Sources told Reuters in May the bank was weighing a dual stock listing, possibly in Mexico and New York.

(Reporting by Kylie Madry; Editing by Sarah Morland and Leslie Adler)