Taiwan's best international bank 2020: Citi
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Taiwan's best international bank 2020: Citi


Paulus Mok, Chairman, Taiwan, Citi.jpg
Paulus Mok, Citi

Citi stands apart from other foreign banks operating in Taiwan. It combines a leading retail bank with a world-class corporate and investment banking franchise. It has also built deep relationships with its clients in the region.

Citi opened its first representative office in Taipei in 1965 and its first branch the following year. Since breaking ground in Taiwan, it has established a network of 47 branches and a workforce of 4,000 employees. Under the watch of its Taiwan chairman Paulus Mok, it had an impressive year in 2019.

Citi booked $982 million of revenue in 2019 and generated a 13% jump in income year on year to $482 million, while reporting a net return on equity of 11.7%. It has $28.4 billion of total assets, $21 billion in deposits and an $11.9 billion loan portfolio, with a 0.41% non-performing loan ratio.

Citi has leveraged its retail network to make a bigger push into wealth management, adding a ‘total wealth adviser’ (TWA) advisory tool to its online banking services last year.

Using the TWA service, Citi’s clients can access their finance portfolio through their online accounts or the bank’s mobile app.

The new tool follows consistent digital development by the bank, with mobile stock trading and FX trading platforms launched in 2017 and 2018, respectively. It also has a comprehensive mobile banking app for managing finances, and recently adopted voice biometric technology for authentication, which 80% of its customers are using.

The bank’s CIB division worked on several large transactions during the year, including Taiwanese electric component manufacturer Yageo Corp’s $1.8 billion acquisition of US firm Kemet Corp – one of the largest outbound acquisitions in Taiwan for two decades.

In the capital markets, Citi alone led Foxconn’s $273 million block trade of Alibaba shares.

The bank’s commercial banking operation capitalized on the impact of the US-China trade war on Taiwanese companies, which have faced challenges including relocating production facilities out of mainland China and keeping up with disruptive digital technology. It was able to boost its outbound cross-border revenue by 7% last year.

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