Wells Fargo to increase international operations: report

LONDON Sun Mar 4, 2012 7:35pm EST

LONDON (Reuters) - U.S. bank Wells Fargo (WFC.N) has drawn up plans to build up its overseas operations and wants to expand into 20 markets worldwide, the Financial Times reported on Monday.

Only 2 percent of the bank's 260,000 staff is currently based outside the U.S., the newspaper said. Wells Fargo inherited a network of international offices after acquiring rival Wachovia in 2008.

The FT said the bank will open corporate banking services in 20 countries including Britain, Germany, China and Australia.

The bank's global head, Richard Yorke, is leading the expansion abroad, the paper said, citing him as saying Wells Fargo sees scope to grow dramatically as mid-market U.S. companies look for opportunities abroad.

The report said Wells Fargo has appointed James Johnston as head of Europe, Middle East and Africa as part of its expansion.

Wells Fargo was not immediately available for comment.

(Reporting by Clare Kane)