Citi hires from DBS for India wealth push

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The firm has made two appointments aiming to capture a larger slice of the wealth management business represented by Indians based locally and abroad.

Citi Private Bank has named Varun Chugh as global market manager for the global India business and Puneet Sanwalka as head of India onshore business.

Chugh will report to Jyrki Rauhio, South Asia head and will be responsible for leading the private bank’s offshore and onshore India business with the mandate to increase the share of both the Indian diaspora and domestic investors.

He will also work with bankers in the private bank’s other regional business units in North America, Latin America and Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Before Citi Private Bank, Chugh was at DBS Bank, where he ran its global South Asian team.

Sanwalka, who will be based in Mumbai, will report to both Chugh and Pramit Jhaveri, CEO of Citi India. He will be responsible for the product platform and for growing the domestic client base in India.

Before joining the private banking division, Sanwalka held various roles in Citi’s global consumer banking business in India, including business development for Citigold and Citibusiness and head of consumer India strategy.

The new appointments complete the formation of Rauhio’s South Asia leadership team, the firm noted.

India has the largest diaspora population in the world, with many as 16 million Indians living outside the country they were born in, according to the statement. A significant proportion are ultra high net worth families who have settled in Southeast Asia, Hong Kong, Australasia, the Gulf region, East Africa, the UK, the US and Canada.

“For many of these families, their business footprint is multinational and their appetite is equally eclectic,” Rauhio said in the statement.

“They are investing in overseas assets such as commercial and residential real estate and are represented by family offices and family members in locations around the world, managing the family business and investing activities locally.”

In India alone, there are 263,000 high net worth individuals with around $1trn in wealth, according to the report, citing Capgemini data. India has 136 billionaires, ranking the country fourth behind the US, China and Germany in terms of the number of billionaires.

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