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Citi hires Zoher Karu as Head of APAC Data & Analytics

Citi has appointed Zoher Karu as Head of Asia Pacific Data and Analytics, within Citi’s Consumer Banking business in the region. In this expanded role, reporting to Anand Selva, Head of Asia Pacific Consumer Banking, Mr Karu will have oversight of Citi’s data and analytics capabilities and customer insights across the Consumer Banking business in Asia Pacific. As a result, Mr Karu’s role will cover 17 out of Citi’s 19 Consumer Banking markets worldwide.

He brings with him in-depth experience and knowledge of analytics and technology specific to fast-moving consumer industries. By reporting directly to Citi’s Head of Consumer Banking for the region, Mr Karu will be responsible for driving the use of data to deliver customer value and business growth. As an example, by leveraging insights, Citi will be able to further customize merchant offers specific to customers based on their banking behavior and location. Mr Karu was most recently Chief Data Officer at eBay. He joined the global online marketplace in 2013 as a member of the company’s Executive team, originally as its first Vice President of Customer Optimization and Data. Prior to eBay, Mr Karu was Vice President of Marketing Analytics and Insight at retailer Sears Holdings.

He has also held roles at smaller firms extracting insights from voice conversations or studying shopping habits and preferences of customers within physical store environments. Mr Karu began his career at global management consulting firm McKinsey & Co. after a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Across these roles, Mr Karu led the effort to leverage technology to organize data and uncover in-depth insights to deepen customer engagement and loyalty and generate growth.

Commenting on Mr Karu’s appointment, Anand Selva said, “Zoher’s appointment to this role is a key part of our digital transformation and overall strategy. To be Asia’s best digital bank, we need to offer remarkable client experiences that set us apart and that are locally relevant to our target customers. Data and technology are critical enablers to build these capabilities and create and offer real-time experiences that are hyper-personalized, contextual and highly relevant to our customers.”

The Global Consumer Bank in Asia, the largest profit center for the business outside of North America, recently recorded its fifth consecutive quarter of revenue growth, making it the fastest growing consumer business for Citi globally. For the third quarter of 2017, the business reported a five per cent increase in revenue year-on-year to US$1.87 billion.