As part of a global restructuring of its corporate and investment banking group, Citigroup has announced that Robert Morse is to become head of its Asian global corporate and investment banking unit. He will be replacing Stephen Long who is to return to New York to become chief operating officer of Citigroup International.

Long has been the top man for Citigroup in Asia since 1998. His experience in Latin America though the various crises in the 1980s and 1990s made him eminently suitable to run Citibank in Asia at a time when Asia was suffering its own crisis.

Known as a hands-on banker, his skills have enabled Citigroup to enjoy a period of stability and growth in Asia while other banks have gone to the wall. His most recent public appearance was on Monday in Korea where he signed the documents for Citigroup's acquisition of Koram Bank.

While not banking, Long is sometime seen riding his Harley Davidson motorbike around Hong Kong's Peak. In New York he will report to Sir Deryck Maughn, CEO of Citigroup International.

Morse is something of an old Asia hand, having run Salomon Smith Barney in Asia from 1996 until the end of 1998. He then moved back to New York where he has been co-head and then head of Citigroup's global investment banking business. His move back can only be seen a statement of intent of how seriously Citigroup takes its Asian investment banking business.