) -- 2011 could be even busier than 2010 for Michael Corbat, the CEO of
Citi Holdings unit and the man in charge of selling the bank's toxic assets.
Corbat has been at work whittling down Citi Holdings' assets and will have sold $100 billion in assets in 2010.
Some larger deals took place in the fourth quarter, including the sale of Citigroup's
Student Loan Corp.
private student loans to
for $600 million, the sale of $28 billion of student loans to
for $1.2 billion and the sale of $1.6 billion in managed assets from the U.S. retail sales finance portfolios to GE Capital, a unit of
In 2011, it is likely that Corbat will be able to check OneMain, the restructured part of CitiFinancial and Citigroup's British online bank Egg, off of his list.
"If you look at what our priorities are, it is clearly CitiFinancial," said Corbat. "We said we would get the restructuring done, and we have."
Citigroup is hoping to sell these assets by the end of 2011.
Bidding for Egg
has already been rumored
to be taking place, with
apparently bidding on the asset.
Corbat would not specify exactly how much Citi Holdings will trim down in 2011.
"We don't tell the market what our pace of reduction will be," says Corbat. "The last thing you want to do is put a clock over your head and say we are going to sell these things by a certain point in time. We look at what is happening in the market and we look at what asset prices are doing. Then, when the timing is right, we push those things forward and take them into the markets."
Corbat added that sees 2011 as being more active because the market is recovering and asset valuations are making a rebound. Corbat said that mortgage prices and securities have risen and the cost of capital and financing has come down, which is driving valuations.
"The deal market has opened back up," Corbat said. "If you look at our pace of reduction out of the special asset pool over a quiet summer our team sold about $15 billion of assets in the third quarter. There is a good appetite in particular for yield and credit type assets. We have seen very good demand for our securities."
Investors shouldn't expect Citi Holdings to make any fire sales to take the assets off its balance sheet, says Corbat. He says the expectation is that Citi Holdings will be winding down assets for awhile.
"There are some long-maturity assets in there -- mortgages, student loans -- and people's expectations should be that some of those assets are going to be around for a relatively long time," he said. "When the market is willing to pay us the value of those assets we will happy to sell them."
--Written by Maria Woehr in New York.
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