Inside Ray McGuire’s decision to jump from Citigroup to running for New York City mayor, and the biggest challenges he’ll face in trying to win the job

Raymond McGuire Citigroup NYC mayor candidate

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When Citigroup announced in September 2018 that it was shaking up its investment banking operations, the personnel moves brought an end to Raymond McGuire’s 13-year run managing the bank’s merger advisory business.

The decision gave McGuire, as a Citigroup vice chairman, more time to focus on the corporate relationships he’d developed over a 30-year Wall Street career. It also left him without the day-to-day management responsibilities he had come to enjoy as a top executive at a global bank, according to a former colleague. 

McGuire, 63, took a step toward managing a large enterprise once again on Thursday when he resigned from Citigroup and announced his candidacy to become the next mayor of New York City.

He joins a crowded race of six or so Democratic candidates that’s expected to get even bigger before a June 2021 primary, according to political strategists who spoke to Business Insider. 

“Ray is a very interesting candidate,” said Bradley Tusk, a venture capitalist who served as campaign manager for Mayor Michael Bloomberg and communications director for Senator Chuck Schumer. “Right now, prime Democratic voters in New York City are trending very much to the left, but if crime keeps going up, if job losses grow even worse, if the city’s quality of life — trash, graffiti, homelessness — continues to decline and voters get really fed up with all of it, then Ray has a chance to capitalize on that and contend.” 

His move had been rumored for months. In January, Brian Schwartz at CNBC reported that McGuire was being urged by business leaders to consider a run for mayor, and that the then-Citigroup executive hadn’t ruled it out. Talk picked up this summer and culminated with this week’s announcement.

But it was only as the city’s troubles mounted that McGuire made the decision to enter the race, according to friends.

“I have known Ray for 20 years, and I’ve been talking to him about what he’s been planning to do,” said Chad Leat, a former Citigroup banker who now advises private equity firms TPG and Apollo Global Management. “I’ve already maxed out my contribution and I will be happy to support him in every way I can.”

Schwartz reported Thursday that McGuire had tapped Valerie Jarrett, an advisor during the Obama administration, and Charles Phillips, former CEO of Infor, as co-chairs of his campaign. 

McGuire’s campaign declined to comment for this story.

McGuire’s bid for mayor comes at a critical time for NYC

A lot has changed since that first CNBC story in January.

In March and April, the coronavirus ravaged New York City, leading to thousands of deaths and shelter-in-place orders that crushed local restaurants and bars.

Millions of square feet of corporate office space emptied out, and there was soon such an exodus from the city to the suburbs that the New Yorker magazine wrote a feature story titled “The Pandemic Sparks a Real-Estate Gold Rush in Upstate New York.” The city now faces a $9 billion budget shortfall. 

See more: ‘A more comprehensive coverage model’: Read the memo Citigroup …read more

Source:: Business Insider


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