Citigroup Appoints Antonios to Lead U.A.E. in Gulf Expansion

  • Antonios was previously the chief executive officer of Lebanon
  • U.S. lender is working to increase its presence in the region

Citigroup Inc. named Elissar Farah Antonios as chief executive officer for the United Arab Emirates as the bank seeks to expand in the Persian Gulf region.

Antonios, who joined the U.S. bank in 2005, was most recently the head of the Lebanon office, Citigroup said in a statement Monday. In her new role, she will report to Atiq Rehman, head of the bank’s Middle East and Africa region.

Citigroup has made several appointments in the oil-rich region in the last few years as it seeks to expand its presence. The U.S. lender set up a three-member equity research team in Dubai last year as part of a plan to double the number of Middle East stocks it covers. It also appointed Carmen Haddad as CEO for Qatar in 2014.

U.A.E. is Citigroup’s largest franchise in the Middle East and Africa region and is a key market for the corporate and investment bank, as well as wealth management, Rehman said in the statement. The U.S. lender saw its assets under management in the U.A.E. jump by about 30 percent in 2015, Anthony Habis, head of Citigroup’s private banking in the U.A.E. and Saudi Arabia and its global family office in the Middle East and North Africa said last month.

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