Yes Bank is exploring a potential bid for the Indian retail assets of Citibank, joining a list of suitors eyeing the local operations of the foreign bank that is partially exiting 13 countries.
According to chief executive Prashant Kumar, Yes Bank will look at acquiring Citi’s retail assets, including credit cards and wealth management in India.
In an interview, Kumar said, “We would definitely explore that opportunity; I think they are running a process. Once all of that is in the public domain, we would definitely like to explore not only credit cards but also wealth management and retail business. Then, depending on our appetite, we would take a call.”
Over the last year, Kumar has been making efforts to rebuild the bank amid challenges posed by COVID-19. The bank reported a 33% growth in retail term deposits from a year earlier, 60% growth in corporate term deposits and 50% growth in current and savings accounts (Casa) in fiscal 2021.
However, the bank’s asset quality continues to be under pressure, with gross non-performing assets as a percentage of total loans hovering above 15%. The bank’s plan to further clean up the soured loan book by setting up an asset reconstruction company is facing a roadblock after RBI turned down the proposal.