(Bloomberg) -- Citigroup Inc.’s senior-most dealmaker in the Europe, Middle East and Africa, Alison Harding-Jones, is leaving after just over five years at the Wall Street bank.

Harding-Jones, head of mergers and acquisitions in EMEA, will remain with the bank until the end of March to transition her responsibilities, Citigroup said in an internal memo to staff seen by Bloomberg News. 

London-based Harding-Jones, a managing director, was also vice-chair of corporate and investment banking at Citigroup. Prior to joining the US bank in 2017, she worked at UBS Group AG.

Citigroup said in the memo that it plans to name a successor to Harding-Jones in the coming weeks. A representative for Citigroup confirmed the contents of the memo. 

The exit of Harding-Jones, one of the most senior women in European finance, is likely a blow to the US bank’s efforts to boost its M&A operations in Europe and compete with rivals including Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. During her time at Citigroup, Harding-Jones has worked on a number of big-ticket deals, including the acquisition of nicotine pouch maker Swedish Match AB last year by Philip Morris International Inc.

Harding-Jones is leaving at a time when global dealmaking activity is falling on a gloomy macroeconomic outlook and a tough market for financing deals, particularly private equity buyouts. The value of deals in EMEA is down 69% this year to $73.4 billion, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Citigroup ranks third as an adviser in the region, the data show. 

Last year, Citigroup named former Credit Suisse Group AG executive Jens Welter as its new co-head of European investment banking, working alongside Ignacio Gutierrez-Orrantia. Other recent hires include Cyril Besseddik from JPMorgan Chase & Co. to lead coverage of health-care companies in EMEA.

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(Updates with details of memo from second paragraph.)

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