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Citi splits consumer banking and credit card units as part of large restructuring

Citi splits consumer banking and credit card units as part of large restructuring

Citigroup Inc. plans to split its consumer banking unit from its credit-card business as part of a broader reorganization to cut costs and simplify the large financial institution's structure, the company said Monday.
Citi said named Teresa Dial, 58, global head of consumer strategy and chief executive of consumer banking in North America. That business will now operate separately from its U.S. credit-card lending operations, which the bank folded into a global cards unit, led by Steven Freiberg.
The moves come as CEO Vikram Pandit puts his imprimatur on the bank, which he took over after Charles Prince was forced out amid massive write-downs on mortgage-linked securities.
Many analysts expect the credit crisis to spread to consumer lending, which would put the credit card business in danger of major write-downs.
Citi also said it will set up geographical regions led by regional CEOs as the bank targets faster-growing regions outside of the slumping United States. Ajay Banga will head the Asia Pacific region. William Mills is in charge of Western Europe, Middle East and Africa. Shirish Apte will run the Central and Eastern Europe region. Manuel Mora will handle Mexico and Latin America.
"The new organizational structure will allow Citi to focus its resources toward growth in emerging and developed markets," the company said in a statement.