On Tuesday morning it was announced that Vikram Pandit resigned from his post as CEO of Citigroup. Pandit will be replaced immediately by Michael Corbat, who is the CEO of Citigroup’s Europe, Middle East and Africa division, according to the bank. Corbat has been with the company since 1983. Pandit will also resign from his seat on the company’s board of directors. President and Chief Operating Officer John Havens also resigned from his post.
Citi is the third-biggest bank in the United States, holding $1.9 trillion in assets, according to the Federal Reserve. There was no explanation given as to why the two executives left the company abruptly. Daniel Alpert, the managing partner for Westwood Capital Partners LLC, said, “He’s done pretty much all he can do to turn the bank around There is some meaning to quit while you’re ahead.”
In a statement on Tuesday, Pandit said, “now is the right time for someone else to take the helm at Citigroup” after the bank “emerged from the financial crisis as a strong institution.”
Pandit founded a hedge fund that was acquired by Citigroup back in 2007, which is when he joined the bank. He was promoted to CEO by December of 2007. Before founding his hedge fund, Pandit was the head of investment banking for Morgan Stanley, which he left in 2005.
Pandit graduated from Columbia University with a bachelor’s degree in three years after enrolling at the age of 16. He is a native of India. In 1986 he earned his doctorate in finance. This past December, Pandit said that the bank would be cutting 4,500 jobs in an effort to cut costs. The cuts accounted for 1.5 percent of the bank’s total workforce across the world of 267,000. The company employed 375,000 people when Pandit was hired in 2007.
Pandit is a naturalized citizen who lives in New York with his family.