Regent Bank Credits Investors with Quick Start

Nowata-based Regent Bank’s new branch in the Tulsa market has been opening 20-40 new accounts per day and has more than $25 million in loans in the pipeline since the office opened Aug. 1, said Regent Bank CEO Sean Kouplen.
Kouplen credited the 70 investors in Regent Capital Corp., the entity that recently purchased Regent Bank, with the surge in business. Many of the investors are business owners or executives in the Tulsa area.
Kouplen and Dow Hughes, Regent Bank’s chairman organized the investor group. Kouplen has served in executive positions with Tulsa area financial institutions Grand Bank and Citizens Security Bank while Hughes previously served as executive vice president of MidFirst Bank.
“It has been very busy, primarily because we have 70 local investors and clients who were waiting on us to return to Tulsa,” Kouplen said. “Our initial burst of business has been coming from there.”
Regent Bank opened the banking center in 4,000 SF on the ground floor of Executive Center I on the southwest corner of 71st Street and Yale Avenue. The branch marks the 110-year-old bank’s entry into the Tulsa market and is its third banking center. Regent also serves Nowata and South Coffeyville.
“We are so excited about entering the Tulsa market,” said Kouplen. “We realize Tulsa has a number of financial institutions, but we are confident that our business model of highly personalized service, quick decisions and technology utilization will add significant value for business owners throughout the Tulsa metro area.”
Kouplen said it was “a little difficult to just draw a line” and say that the loan production had taken place since the office officially opened, since negotiations have been working since Regent Capital Corp.’s purchase of the bank was approved by regulators April 1.
“There is no question that the Tulsa presence has really sped up our new business generation,” he said.
With 14 employees, Kouplen said the Tulsa office will house executive offices and will become the primary loan production center for the bank. The Nowata office will house operations.
Formerly a BancFirst location, the Tulsa office will provide full service, including a six-lane, drive-up facility, Kouplen said.
Members of Regent Bank’s board of directors from the Tulsa area include Hughes, Kouplen, Chuck Patterson, Tom Wenrick, Robert Zoellner, Bobby Nelson and Tony Young.
Regent Bank has recruited several banking veterans to join their team. Monte Linihan, a 25-year lending veteran, will serve as chief credit officer while Bruce Adkins, Jed Day and Chris Rector will lead private banking, business banking and real estate lending divisions in the Tulsa market. Stacy Rogers and Danielle Conrad were recruited to lead the Tulsa retail banking team.
“Regent Bank is very fortunate to have a strong foundation of banking veterans and board members,” said Hughes. “We couldn’t be happier with our team.”
While Regent Bank will begin with only one Tulsa location, convenience is a major selling point for the bank.
“Our business clients should never have to visit the bank,” said Kouplen. “By utilizing remote capture, online cash management, lockbox services and courier services, our clients can bank with us from their office or home. We are committed to taking all necessary paperwork to our clients for their signature. We know their time is valuable.”
“We are a business and executive bank,” Kouplen said. “Our perfect client is a business owner for whom we can provide value – really quick decisions, access to an executive level banker who can listen and help you solve problems and an organization that will stick with you through thick and thin.”
He said that although the economy makes it a “nervous time” for bankers as well as business owners, he sees that as a benefit for Regent Bank’s entry into the Tulsa market.
“We have the distinct advantage of coming into the market fresh, and very well capitalized and ready to do business,” he said.
Hughes believes this is the perfect time for Regent to enter the Tulsa market. “In today’s challenging business environment, a strong personal relationship with your banker is critical. We believe our ability to offer quick, local decisions is exactly what Tulsa area business owners need at this time.”
At the time of the purchase, Regent Capital Corp. deposited an additional $3 million of capital into the bank to solidify its balance sheet and prepare for future growth. Capital stands at about $15 million, Kouplen said.
He said the bank has nearly doubled in size, to assets of $120 million, in the year since the group signed the contract to purchase the bank.
International Bancshares Corp., the parent company of IBC Bank, was recently recognized with two rankings by American Banker as one of the nation’s largest banks and thrifts with the most assets and highest five-year return on equity.
IBC placed in the top 150 out of more than 8,500 U.S. banks in the two category rankings. With more than $11 billion in assets, and a 16.9 percent return on five-year equity, IBC’s solid financials propelled the bank onto the list, according to American Banker’s 2008 third quarter edition.
The rankings continue the accolades and recognitions IBC has received this year. In April, Nixon received the International Citizen of the Year Award from the World Affairs Council of San Antonio, and in May, IBC was honored with the Good Neighbor Award from the U.S. – Mexico Chamber of Commerce. IBC was also recently recognized by Hispanic Business Magazine as the top Hispanic-owned business in Texas, ranking sixth nationally, and placing as the No. 1 Hispanic-owned financial institution in the country.
American Banker bases its rankings on data from SNL Financial of Charlottesville, Va., the leading multi-sector research and information firm for financial information. SNL reviewed worldwide assets for U.S. companies and data for top-tier bank holding companies that were based on Y-9C filings. For the asset ranking, SNL compared assets from 2008 vs. 2007 to determine the rankings. For the return on equity ranking, SNL examined the return on average equity for one-year, three-year and five-year periods.
IBC had a 14.2 percent return on one-year equity, 16 percent on three-year and 16.9 percent return on five-year equity. As of March 31, IBC had more than $11 billion in assets to rate it among the top-tier of banks in the United States.

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