MADRID (Reuters) -Spain’s Santander said on Friday it was out of the process to buy Citigroup’s Mexican retail bank.

After submitting a non-binding offer to buy assets of Citibanamex, Santander “has been informed it will not be continuing in the next stages of the process,” the Spanish bank said in a statement.

Santander Executive Chairman Ana Botin said in February that the bank would look at Citibanamex but would pursue a disciplined approach and not issue new shares to fund any such deal.

The euro zone second-biggest lender in terms of market value has been expanding in emerging economies in search of faster growth than in its core markets in Europe, where it has been cutting costs to cope with ultra low interest rates.

(Reporting by Inti Landauro and Jesús Aguado; editing by Jesús Aguado)