May 27, 2008

Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Tal Alsaud on Chuck Prince and Citigroup

Bartiromo: Lets talk about one of your big holdings, Citigroup. Several of the company's largest holders have recently been net sellers. What does [CEO] Chuck Prince need to do?

Prince Alwaleed: I met with Sandy Weill and Chuck Prince a month ago at the George V Hotel in Paris, and we discussed the promise from Chuck that he will deliver good results. If I can quote him, he said: "Prince, we have put the big problems of Citi behind us, and we have to move our shares to above 50."

Bartiromo: So how long a grace period are you giving Chuck Prince?

Prince Alwaleed: The grace period is over. You can quote me on that. Right now we are looking to the results in the next few weeks and....I have full confidence that [Citi] will deliver. This is the No. 1 company in the world. It has equity of $400 billion and assets of $1.4 trillion. So no more excuses.....Excuses are finished. Now we are at war. Citigroup has won the internal war by cleaning up all the Enron residuals, WorldCom, the European scandal. Now we have to win the external war...make good investments...and that should lift the price of the stock. That's it. I told him, as [Citi's] biggest shareholder, we have to win the external war. Thank you, Mr. Chuck Prince. Now, the Prince of Saudi Arabia tells the Prince of New York: Go to war, and I am backing you 100%.

~ "For Citi, 'No More Excuses'," BusinessWeek, April 3, 2006, interview by Maria Bartiromo

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