Wednesday, February 20, 2008

The 1990's, In Reverse.

February 19, 2008: 02:15 PM EST

Feb. 19, 2008
NEW YORK (AP) - Citigroup (NYSE:C) Inc. has sold another one of its financial centers to raise cash. The bank said Tuesday that a Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) real estate fund bought its Japanese headquarters in Tokyo.

Citigroup would not disclose the value of the deal.

The bank has been shedding its real estate holdings for a couple years, even before the tight credit markets saddled the bank with billions of dollars in bad debt. Most recently, it sold the last two Manhattan properties on its books to SL Green Realty Corp. (NYSE:SLG PRD) (NYSE:SLG PRC) (NYSE:SLG) in December for about $1.58 billion.

As with these Manhattan office buildings, Citigroup remains a tenant of the Tokyo center, and leases the building instead of owning it.

'The sale-and-leaseback was intended to improve the efficiency of the usage of the balance sheet of Citibank Japan, as well as mitigate the risks of holding property assets,' Citigroup said in a statement.

Citigroup is considering selling other more significant assets -- both in the United States and abroad -- to build up its capital base and return to profitability. CEO Vikram Pandit is reviewing the banks' various global businesses, a process that Citigroup spokespeople say is still ongoing.


Post a Comment

<< Home