August 12 - Customers Bank, Pennsylvania's 12th largest bank with assets of $3.7 billion, has announced the opening of a Loan Production Office in North Philadelphia with a goal of lending at least $300 million over the next three years, with emphasis on affordable lending programs, mortgage lending and small business lending programs targeted particularly to African American, Hispanic and other minority segments of Philadelphia's population.
"There are too many banks around Rittenhouse Square and Market Street in Philadelphia – all trying to go after the wealthy and large businesses," said Jay S. Sidhu, Chairman and CEO of Customers Bank. "We believe the best contribution a community bank can make in Philadelphia is to serve the 'underserved' and help with higher percentage home ownership, stronger small businesses and greater availability of affordable lending. That's what creates a stronger economy over a period of time."
"Community involvement – serving the 'underserved,' especially the African American and Hispanic communities in the low to moderate income neighborhoods, is in the DNA of Customers Bank," Sidhu continued. "We have been working on our plans for Philadelphia for about a year now. In 2012, we made about $31 million in Mortgage, Small Business and Community Development loans in Philadelphia, up about six fold over less than $6 million in 2011."
"Our goals are to take that figure up to about $80 million in 2013 and well over $100 million by 2015," stated Richard Ehst, President of Customers Bank.
"We first wanted to develop our residential mortgage lending group to support our multi-family and small business lending groups. That's done now and we are ready to take off," Ehst concluded.
Customers also announced that it has already made $25,000 in scholarships to low/moderate income students in majority/minority neighborhoods of Philadelphia and has an application with FHLB in Pittsburgh for a grant of $500,000 to support the Walnut Park Plaza project in Philadelphia. Customers Bank's closest branch office to Philadelphia is about seven miles from the city limits. Plans call for converting this office at 9th & Berks Streets in North Philadelphia into a full firm branch office upon receipt of regulatory approval.
About Customers Bank
Customers Bank is a community-based, full-service bank headquartered in Phoenixville, Pa., with assets of approximately $3.7 billion. A member of the Federal Reserve System and deposits insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation ("FDIC"), Customers Bank provides a full range of banking services to small and medium-sized businesses, professionals, individuals and families through offices in Pennsylvania, New York, Rhode Island, Massachusetts and New Jersey. Committed to fostering customer loyalty, Customers Bank uses a High Tech/High Touch strategy that includes use of industry-leading technology to provide customers better access to their money, as well as a continually expanding portfolio of loans to small businesses, multi-family projects, mortgage companies and consumers. Customers Bank is a subsidiary of Customers Bancorp, Inc., a bank holding company based in Wyomissing, Pa. For more information, visit www.customersbank.com. Follow us at www.twitter.com/@CustomersBank.