New York Magazine recently ran an exceptional piece on the back story of Pandit’s rise to the top job at Citi. In summary, he was smart but didn’t know how to play “the game” throughout his career. The article is sprinked with anecdotes of how Pandit liked to roll with brown people and they even nicknamed his inner circle the “Indian Mafia.”
I’m still clueless on how Citi valued his hedge fund, Old Lane, at USD 800 million. Even back then when money was flowing it seemed a bit outrageous.
The smartest move that Pandit made was selling off some assets in India. Back in November 2007, Citi sold one of it’s residential properties in South Bombay for USD 8.5 million. Sadly, that might be the only positive balance sheet move by Pandit.
The billion dollar quote from the article:
…When Pandit was born, an astrologer told his family that Ã¢â‚¬Å“whatever this boy touches will turn to gold.Ã¢â‚¬Â
ouch…I wonder if that astrologer still has a job?