Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C) is rebooting with a digital initiative to become a national bank again in the US. In the past, the global bank has shred retail franchise business in the US to concentrate on a handful of large cities and customers from an affluent category. It has led other banks to grow in the US.
The global bank is now focusing on the US business through a mobile app. The bank has spent three years of developing and experimenting with the digital initiative. It is now focusing purely on digital offering than establishing branches. The bank is not looking to acquire the rivals to expand the business.
The bank will use the mobile to service the customers by providing credit cards, banking, investment as well lending. It will expand the new offerings to the existing credit card customers of more than 120 million.
The new customers can open an instant digital account with Citigroup. It also allows viewing of accounts of other banks.
The new initiative of Citigroup is in line with the rivals in upstart Silicon Valley that banks on the belief that customers prefer digital services. It also resembles the strategy of Goldman Sachs Group Inc (NYSE:GS), which has used the digital initiative to push into the customer banking than opening the physical branches.
The Citigroup also plans to unveil a bunch of digital products in the US using the extended mobile app later this year. It will introduce a roboadviser style digital product that allows people to buy goods at a retail store.
Citigroup is not the first one to enter the digital banking business. Some of the banks that established digital banking much before enabling the customers to park their funds at higher interest rates are Ally Financial Inc (NYSE:ALLY), Synchrony Financial (NYSE:SYF) and Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS).
BBVA Compass Bancshares Inc and JPMorgan Chase & Co. have also introduced the digital offshoot products to garner young customers.
Citigroup has also entered into a deal last year to double the ATMs in the US.