A stagnating local economy and a strong yen are leading Japanese companies to look outside their own borders for expansion, and sources say that has led Citigroup to add seven bankers—two senior staff and five junior—in the country to tend mergers and acquisitions.
Bloomberg reported Wednesday that an internal Citigroup memo said that as of Nov. 1, Masao Yoshikawa is to join Citigroup as managing director and head of Japan M&A. Yoshikawa’s hiring was confirmed by Tokyo-based spokeswoman Mika Nemoto, who did not provide further comment. The sources said that some of the new hires are already working, while others will start within three months.
Two people familiar with the additions were cited saying that Citi made the move expecting that cross-border acquisitions and restructuring will increase. Bloomberg data indicate that in 2012, Japanese companies announced overseas acquisitions valued at $96 billion, the most since at least 2000. Just Monday Japan’s Softbank said that it would acquire 70% of Sprint.