With Financiero Inbursa no longer vying, this leaves only two buyers for Citigroup’s Mexican unit.
Banamex is the consumer unit of Citigroup, which is looking to divest the business as part of a turnaround strategy of its worldwide business.
In a filing with Mexican stock exchange, Inbursa stated: “Following submission of a non-binding proposal for the businesses in question, the parties mutually agreed that Inbursa will not be continuing to the next stages of the process.”
Carlos Slim, the richest man of Mexico, has been considered as the preferred local investor by Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador for the acquisition of Banamex.
President Obrador is keen that the business unit remain in the Mexican hands, and the bank’s historic buildings be preserved, and the jobs be protected.
Banamex has been a leading bank in the country for long. In 2001, it was bought by Citigroup.
Now with the exit of Financiero Inbursa leaving the race, it leaves Grupo Mexico SAB, an entity controlled by mining tycoon German Larrea, vying with a group of international and local investors led by Banca Mifel.
Grupo Financiero Banorte dropped out of the competition process following a deadline of 20 October for binding offers.