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Mexican finance minister says "satisfied" with Citibanamex sale

Kitco News

MERIDA, Mexico, March 17 (Reuters) - Mexico's government is "satisfied" with the sale process of Citigroup's (C.N) Mexican retail bank Citibanamex, Finance Minister Rogelio Ramirez de la O said on Friday, adding that the bank is now in the due diligence process with potential buyers.

Speaking at an annual banking conference in the southern city of Merida, the minister added that he had not heard any news that either of the two remaining bidders had dropped out of the race for Citibanamex.

Billionaire German Larrea's conglomerate Grupo Mexico (GMEXICOB.MX) and the head of Mexico's Mifel bank Daniel Becker (MIFEL.UL) are the last two bidders for the bank.

"We have not been aware that either of the two have left (the process)," the finance minister said.

Citigroup announced in January 2022 it would exit Citibanamex, ending its 20-year retail presence in Mexico that was the last of its overseas consumer businesses.

Reuters had previously reported that Grupo Mexico had emerged as the front-runner to buy the consumer banking unit over rival bidder Becker, having secured a $5 billion debt package for its proposed, citing sources.

In February, Citigroup's Chief Executive Jane Fraser met with Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador amid the bank's attempt to finalize the sale of its local unit.

Reporting by Noe Torres; Writing by Anthony Esposito; Editing by Isabel Woodford
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