Citi, an American multinational investment bank and financial services corporation, has launched a global technology hub at its Bahrain offices, the first of its kind in the region.
The hub, which is based at Citi’s Bahrain premises, aims at employing 1,000 coders within the next ten years. The facility was set up in partnership with Tamkeen, a government-funded labor fund, and Bahrain’s Economic Development Board (EDB), which are also investing, a Citi executive said.
As part of the plan, Citi will hire at least 100 people in coding-related roles each year over the next 10 years. The new hires will initially work on two of the bank’s main platforms, Citi Velocity and Citi FX Policy, said Mr. Ala’a Saeed, Citi FX’s global head of electronic platforms and distribution.
“Selecting our two flagship systems to develop out of here in Bahrain is a huge endorsement of the talent and the caliber of people that we’ve found here,” Mr. Saeed added.
The Chief Executive of Tamkeen, Mr. Hussain Mohammed Rajab stated that the fund will subsidize a portion of the salaries and cover training costs locally and abroad, but didn’t disclose the figures.
Citi has been operating in Bahrain for 50 years and it has sought to market itself as a financial technology hub for the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region in a bid to revive its reputation as a regional banking and business center.
The heavily indebted state, which does not have the oil or gas resources of its Gulf neighbors, received a $10 billion bailout in 2018 from some of its Gulf allies to avoid a credit crunch.