Citi takes a city-focused approach in China

Geoffrey Precourt

Current estimates suggest there are ten cities in the US with a population of more than one million people. By comparison, there are 160 (and counting) such urban centers in China. For that reason alone, it makes sense for Citigroup - or, more familiarly, Citi - to have a significant presence in the market.

"The speed of change in China is staggering," Anthony Michelini, global director, strategy and insights, for Citi's Global Brand Team, told an Advertising Research Foundation (ARF) panel on "Understanding the Chinese Consumer".

And the particular manifestation of that process which most engages Citi is "the dynamics of cities". "Increasingly, our focus isn't on countries, but it's on 150 cities around the world," said Michelini. And, he added, whether it's Mumbai, Moscow or Shanghai, Citi increasingly looks for urban experiences that are shared across cities.