(Bloomberg) -- Citigroup Inc., the third-largest U.S. bank by assets, started an investment banking joint venture in China that will give it access to the world's second-biggest market for share sales.

Pan Xinjun, chairman of partner Orient Securities Co., will also head the venture's six-person board of directors, and Ma Ji will be chief executive officer, the New York-based bank said in an e-mailed statement today. Citi Orient Securities Co. is based in Shanghai and has registered capital of 800 million yuan ($126 million).

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