Citi names Sianturi as Indonesia country head

Batara Sianturi will replace Tigor Siahaan who joined CIMB in March.

Citi has appointed Batara Sianturi as its new country head for Indonesia, replacing Tigor Siahaan, who left to join CIMB in March.

Sianturi, a native Indonesian, will be returning to his home country to assume his new role upon regulatory approvals. He will report to Michael Zink, head of Asean and Citi country officer for Singapore. This will be Sianturi's third country head appointment in a career at Citi that spans nearly three decades.

He is currently the country head for the Philippines as well as cluster head for the Philippines and Guam. A replacement for his current roles is expected to be announced soon.

Prior to that, Sianturi was the country officer for Hungary and also headed 12 other countries in Central Eastern Europe. As part of his new role, he will be responsible for all Citi businesses in Indonesia, a broad realm that includes investment banking, consumer, treasury and markets.

There has been a good deal of movement within the ranks of Indonesian banking teams in the course of the past year. In March, Siahaan left Citi to join CIMB as president director of its Indonesian unit CIMB Niaga. He succeeded Arwin Rasyid who retired.

In April last year, Kunardy Lie moved from Citi to Deutsche Bank as its chief country officer for Indonesia. Lie was previously head of corporate and investment banking for Citi in Indonesia. Gioshia Ralie replaced Lie, running Indonesian corporate and investment banking in an expanded role at Citi.

Last year, Nomura also appointed Kartadjaja Intan as head of Indonesia investment banking replacing Dicky Yordan and Amir Amiruddin, previously co-heads of Indonesia investment banking for Nomura who left earlier last year.

Compared to other regions in Asia, Indonesia’s capital markets have remained quiet, with banks and companies waiting to see how the economic and business-focused policies of the recently elected President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo are implemented.

Parliamentary and presidential elections helped subdue market activity last year and left many foreign investors waiting to make sense of the outcome. 

While foreign investors are keen to invest in Indonesia, the uncertain climate and changes in regulations have cast a pall on M&A activity for some time. DBS, for example, in 2013 walked away from a $7.2 billion acquisition in Bank Danamon, as it was unable to take a majority stake in the bank.

Citi has been present in Indonesia since 1968. By asset size, it is one of the largest foreign banks in Indonesia. As of December 2014, total assets of Citi Indonesia amounted to Rp65T ($5.2 billion). Citi operates 20 branches in six major Indonesian cities - Jakarta, Bandung, Surabaya, Semarang, Medan and Denpasar. 

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