Who Is Ernesto Torres Cantú, Citi’s New Head of International Banking?

Citi has announced significant changes to its organizational model that aim to align its management structure with its business strategy

Mexican banker Ernesto Torres Cantú has been name Citi's new head of international banking. Photographer: Susana Gonzalez/Bloomberg
By Bloomberg Línea
September 13, 2023 | 06:56 PM

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Mexico City — Citigroup has announced the appointment of Ernesto Torres Cantú as CEO of International, as part of changes to the US bank’s organizational structure in line with a transformation that has involved, among other things, the exit of its retail business in several countries outside of the United States.

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Torres Cantú, who until now headed the bank’s Latin American operations, will now have leadership of operations outside North America, Citi said in a statement.

“The scope of Citi’s geographic management will focus on coverage and delivery to clients in local markets and the administration of legal entities,” said the financial institution headed by Jane Fraser.

The bank’s Latin American operations will now be headed by Julio Figueroa, who held the position of managing director for Latin America South.


The move comes in the midst of a transformation process activated three years ago by Fraser that sees a focus on cross-border corporate needs, wealth management and retail business in the United States.

“The new, flatter structure elevates the leaders of Citi’s five businesses and eliminates management layers, which will speed up decision making, drive increased accountability and strengthen the focus on clients. Simplifying the organization will also advance the execution of Citi’s Transformation, the firm’s top priority,” the bank said in a statement.

“I am determined that our bank will deliver to our full potential, and we’re making bold decisions to meet our commitments to all our stakeholders,” said Citi CEO Jane Fraser. “These changes eliminate unnecessary complexity across the bank, increase accountability for delivering excellent client service and strengthen our ability to benefit from the natural linkages that exist amongst our businesses, all with an eye toward delivering on our medium-term targets and our transformation.”


This transformation involved the decision to spin off its Mexican retail business, better known as Banamex, and the activation of a potential sale. Citi decided in May of this year to opt to pursue an Initial Public Offering scheduled to take place in 2025.

In addition to the appointments of Torres and Figueroa, Citi announced an organizational simplification that involves the leaders of Citi’s five businesses reporting directly to the CEO.

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Who is Ernesto Torres Cantú?

The Mexican national, born in Torreón, Coahuila state, holds a degree in industrial engineering from the Instituto Tecnológico de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey and an MBA from Georgia State University.

He has been in banking for more than 40 years and joined Banamex in 1989 as a corporate banker. He has served as CEO of Citibanamex from 2014 to 2019.

He was also general manager of consumer banking at Citibanamex from 2012 to 2014 and in 2006 was appointed president of retail banking in Mexico.

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