Citigroup Applies for a French Broker License in Brexit Plan

  • French license part of plan to move to positions across EU
  • Frankfurt will be firm’s new EU broker-dealer headquarters

Citigroup Inc. has applied for a backup license in France, hedging its bet on making Germany the headquarters for its new European Union broker-dealer after Brexit.

Jim Cowles, the bank’s chief executive officer for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, told French newspaper Les Echos that the license is part of a plan to move positions across the continent. A spokeswoman confirmed the remarks.

The Wall Street bank said in July that Frankfurt was the "first choice" for its new EU trading hub, with the bulk of the 150 new staff the bank is looking to hire in the region being based there. The firm said at the time that it would also boost its presence in Madrid, Paris, Amsterdam, Dublin and Luxembourg.

"We’ve announced that Frank‎furt will be Citi’s EU broker-dealer headquarters and we’ll increase our presence across six other EU cities," the bank said in a statement Friday.

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