Citigroup eyeing third-party joint ventures: report

A Citibank branch is seen in New York February 23, 2009. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

(Reuters) - Citigroup Inc is hoping to create joint ventures with third parties as a way of shedding businesses it does not want, the New York Post reported on Tuesday, citing high-level insiders at the New York bank.

Citigroup could not be reached for comment by Reuters.

The deals would be similar to what Citigroup arranged when it combined its Smith Barney unit with Morgan Stanley’s wealth-management unit, giving Morgan Stanley 51 percent control of the joint venture, the newspaper said.

Citigroup is looking to strike those types of partnerships with non-core assets like CitiFinancial, CitiMortgage, Primerica, Japanese brokerage Nikko Cordial and Citi’s private-label credit card business, the paper said.

Citigroup and the United States reached an agreement last week in which the government will substantially raise its stake in the bank.

Reporting by Ajay Kamalakaran in Bangalore; Editing by Dan Lalor