Citi's Global Consumer Bank (GCB), one of the world's leading digital banks, serves as a trusted partner to more than 100 million customers in 19 markets worldwide.
A global leader in credit cards, wealth management and commercial banking, the Global Consumer Bank is a compelling franchise: a globally recognized brand; strong competitive positions in a mix of developed and emerging markets; best-in-class value propositions; high-quality target clients; leading digital capabilities; and disciplined credit and expense management.
GCB drives client-led growth in three priority markets—Asia, Mexico and the U.S.—by deploying its global scale, products and capabilities, particularly digital, to differentiate locally with high impact and relevance. In 2017, we continued to execute on investments in key growth areas, especially U.S. Cards, Mexico and technology, fueling the engines of future growth. We enhanced our products and expanded premier partnerships, igniting growth in revenues, customers and customer satisfaction while maintaining risk discipline. Our focus on wealth management intensified, and we continued to calibrate our distribution network, utilizing a mix of Citi Smart Banking formats, to ensure the right mix of "bricks and clicks."
With client engagement rapidly shifting to digital channels, mobile continues to be at the core of a simpler, better customer experience. With an increasingly agile model and mobile first approach, GCB dramatically accelerated its speed to market and the number of new digital features, up 300 percent versus 2016, driving robust double-digit growth in the number of digital and mobile users globally. Innovative solutions were launched across lending, wealth management, payments and cards, many of which were industry firsts, delivering greater speed, ease and convenience. And by partnering with leading digital ecosystems, we embedded our services in the platforms our clients use every day, driving increased engagement.
Today, following several years of streamlining and targeted investments, GCB comes to market with leading positions in core markets, far stronger products and digital capabilities than ever before, and multiple engines for future growth. Clients and the industry took note with Citi garnering key awards and recognition, including World's Best Digital Bank (Euromoney), Best Digital Bank in six Asia markets (Global Finance), #1 in Customer Satisfaction for the second consecutive year (American Customer Satisfaction Index) and Best Retail Bank for High-Net-Worth Families in the U.S. (Kiplinger's).
GCB operates approximately 2,450 branches and generated $7.2 billion in pretax earnings, representing 32 percent of Citigroup's total. In 2017, the business held $306 billion in average deposits, managed $418 billion in average assets and included $297 billion in average loans.
Citi Branded Cards
An important growth engine for GCB, Citi Branded Cards provides payment and credit solutions to consumers and small businesses, with 56 million accounts globally. In 2017, the business generated annual purchase sales of $418 billion and had an average loan portfolio of $108 billion.
Building a balanced portfolio across proprietary and co-brand products coupled with acquiring multi-year investments to provide differentiated value and experiences are starting to bear fruit, with gains in market share, acquisitions, purchase sales and loans.
In the U.S., the Costco co-brand credit card portfolio, acquired and converted in 2016, continues to see customer engagement exceeding expectations, with more than 2.1 million new accounts and $166 billion in purchase sales since conversion. Prestige, Citi's premium rewards travel credit card, was relaunched with a distinct look and enhanced benefits. Double Cash, the #1 cash back card in the U.S. based on Net Promoter Score, and Citi Simplicity®, the largest no-fee product portfolio in the world, continued to drive engagement and satisfaction with industry-leading Net Promoter Scores.
Internationally, Citi strengthened its card portfolio with new products and partnerships. Citi launched rewards, cash back and value cards, part of a global set of core products, in Hong Kong, Malaysia and the United Arab Emirates, expanded its long-term partnership with Expedia in Asia and launched a new white label card with Qantas in Australia. Citi also completed the sale of its merchant acquiring businesses in Hong Kong and Singapore.
Citi continued to leverage the advantage of its global scale and model. Its unrivaled global rewards program ThankYou® Rewards continued to welcome new Points Transfer partners, including JetPrivilege, Turkish Airlines and Avianca LifeMiles, while in Asia, Amazon Shop with Points launched for Citi cardholders in five markets, the first time Citi cardholders outside of the U.S. can redeem ThankYou Rewards for purchases at Amazon.com. Citi® Private Pass,® Citi's award-winning global entertainment access program, continued to grow. Citi offered access to more than 12,000 events with many of the world's biggest artists globally and, as part of its partnership with Live Nation, launched a new live music platform, Citi Sound VaultSM, to provide exclusive access to an extraordinary music experience.
To empower customers with speed, choice and convenience, we launched new e-commerce and digital wallet solutions. In the U.S., Citi PaySM, a tokenized, omnichannel digital wallet, rolled out to Citi's Mastercard cardmembers, and, through an expanded agreement with PayPal, eligible U.S. cardmembers will be able to redeem ThankYou Points when shopping online at millions of merchants that accept PayPal. Citi launched new mobile wallets to customers in several Asia markets, and we continue to drive digital payment tokenization, certifying several issuing platforms.
In addition to reaching clients where, when and how they want to engage with us, technology is enabling smarter, more efficient decisions about what products and services are best suited for them. By deploying machine learning and big data platforms, we are improving the effectiveness of the offers we provide. While at the early stages, utilizing models that allow us to understand each individual's wallet is driving significant improvements in response rates, efficiency, and retention of balances and spend. In the U.S., for example, about half of new credit card accounts originate through digital channels, lowering costs to acquire and serve.
Citi Retail Services is one of North America's largest providers of private label and co-brand credit cards for retailers, serving 86 million accounts for iconic brands, including Best Buy, ExxonMobil, Macy's, Sears, Shell and The Home Depot.
In 2017, Citi Retail Services strengthened its portfolio of leading brands by renewing its agreement with Ford Motor Company and expanding into power sports and equipment through agreements with American Honda Motor Corp., BRP, Honda Power Equipment and Kawasaki Motors Corp., U.S.A.
In addition to new and expanded partnerships, Citi Retail Services utilized its multi-channel expertise, advanced data analytics and digital solutions to help its retail partners grow their businesses. These included "Apply and Buy," enabling consumers nationwide to apply for the ExxonMobil Smart Card credit card directly through the app and begin immediately saving on fuel purchases and the relaunch of the Sears Mastercard with expanded Shop Your Way rewards, an industry-leading rewards offer in which customers can earn rewards points on all purchases everywhere they shop.
In 2017, Citi Retail Services saw purchase sales of $81 billion and a loan portfolio ending the year at $49 billion.
Citibank's relationship model serves clients across the full spectrum of consumer banking needs through its lean, urban-based branch footprint, leading digital capabilities and expanding client-centric ecosystem.
A global leader in wealth management, Citi provides personalized wealth management services, including dedicated bankers, fund access, and a range of exclusive privileges, preferred pricing and benefits to clients around the globe through its Citigold®, Citigold Private Client and Citi Priority client offerings.
In the U.S., Citi's growing retail bank continues to implement a multi-year network transformation, reducing its branch footprint by nearly a third since 2013 while upgrading formats and concentrating resources in six priority markets. With the highest deposits per branch versus peers in core markets, Citi's network is increasingly productive and convenient. In 2017, Citi nearly doubled its fee-free ATM network, making it the largest nationwide.
Sweeping enhancements to its Citigold wealth and investment offering, introduced in late 2016, drove growth in households and balances and increased penetration of investment products. In 2017, Citi added to the number of Relationship Managers and Financial Advisors by 18 percent and opened a dedicated wealth center in Miami and broke ground on another in San Francisco to provide clients with personalized service, industry-leading expertise and a distinctive experience. In tandem, new, more powerful digital capabilities are driving significant gains in client adoption, engagement and satisfaction. Features and functionality include Quick Lock for Debit, enabling customers to lock and unlock their debit card if lost or stolen, access to mobile investment features that provide greater control and flexibility to manage and invest their money, and send and receive capabilities for fast, safe and easy personto- person (P2P) payments through the Zelle Network®. Zelle®, available within the Citi Mobile® App for iPhone® and at Citibank® Online, enables U.S. retail bank customers to make fast, free payments from their checking account to friends and family who bank with most financial institutions in the U.S.
Across the U.S., Citi continued to fuel the growth of small businesses, supporting job creation and thriving communities across the country. In 2017, Citi invested more than $11 billion in small business lending in the U.S. and also financed over $4.7 billion in affordable housing projects.
In Mortgage, Citi announced it would effectively exit direct servicing operations by the end of 2018. This strategic action will enable the business to intensify focus on originations and simplify operations. CitiMortgage, which provides loans for home purchase and refinance transactions in the U.S., originated $13.1 billion in new loans in 2017.
In Asia, Citi extended its leadership in wealth management by refreshing the Citigold brand campaign in 13 markets and streamlined its branch network in key markets, including China and Korea, to adapt to consumers' preference and migration to digital channels. In addition, partnerships with many of the most popular digital ecosystems in the region and a host of innovative digital solutions were introduced. Digital and mobile enhancements include instant lending via mobile, simplified authentication through a mobile token, fingerprint and facial recognition, eFX capabilities and two industry firsts: a natural language chatbot on Facebook Messenger in Singapore and interactive, live video banking in India. Citi also introduced P2P payments services in Hong Kong and Singapore in conjunction with government authorities.
In Mexico, Citibanamex enjoys a preeminent position as the #1 recognized bank brand with leading positions across deposits, investments and loan products. Following the 2016 announcement of a $1 billion investment to upgrade its network and technology, Citi continued to execute, renovating more than 70 Smart branches and installing over 1,600 additional ATMs, sharpening client segmentation, enhancing value propositions and improving data capabilities to enhance both acquisitions and the client experience in digital.
Citi Commercial Banking brings the best of Citi's institutional and consumer franchises to clients, providing global banking capabilities and services to midsized, trade-oriented companies within Citi's footprint. As many of these clients expand internationally, Citi helps enable their growth and ability to access capital across multiple countries, one of Citi's core activities.
In 2017, the business successfully deepened client relationships in key segments and industries, digitized client touch points and sales and service tools, and improved client satisfaction. In the U.S., Citi Commercial Bank earned a Best Brand Award in Middle Market Banking by Greenwich Associates for embracing digitization, enabling business growth and delivering exceptional customer service.