Citigroup chief CEO Vikram Pandit steps down; End of a legacy?

India-born Citigroup CEO who turned around the bank’s fortunes from huge losses suffered in 2007 financial crisis has stepped down on Tuesday after a five-year successful stint at the helm of the bank’s operations.

When chosen to lead the bank on Dec. 11, 2007, Pandit’s first commitment was not to take salary or bonus until the bank turns to profitability. Next year saw his salary touch $128,751 when any other CEO would have siphoned off millions on the fortunes that the bank had achieved during the year with most of it coming from the relief program announced by the Obama administration.

But for buying a private het plane from the $45 billion in Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) funds, which he made it clear was a wrong decision, Pandit kept the bank’s turnaround his main plank to showcase to the world.

After the bank posted five consecutive quarterly profits, Citigroup in 2011 awarded a $23.2 million to retain the CEO and making him one of the highest paid CEOs. Finally, in April 2012, shareholders voted against hike in his pay to $15 million and eventually Pandit has decided to step down. But his contribution to the Citigroup was no less an achievement with a five-year track record.

Pandit favoured Citigroup going “back to the basics of banking” in view of the jobs shortage in the United Statesin and sought an estimated need to create 400 million jobs in the next decade.

Michael Corbat, previously Citigroup’s CEO of Europe, Middle East, and Africa, will succeed Pandit as the CEO of Citigroup.


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