Colonial Bank restructures South Florida operation
By Samantha Joseph
Colonial Bank is restructuring its administration to focus on what it calls mini-regions as part of a plan to serve South Florida's rapid growth.
Bank executives expect the move to streamline the loan process, allowing for quicker turnarounds and improving efficiency. A senior officer will manage each region - Miami-Dade County, Broward/Southern Palm Beach and Northern Palm Beach/Treasure Coast.
The new focus on mini-regions is consistent with company-wide efforts to generate loan business and expand South Florida operations.
The Alabama company also has announced plans to add 19 branches in the next five years for a total of 43 outlets in South Florida. Within the next year, it plans to add eight offices to its existing 24.
"Which is why I thought it was a good time to change the structure," President and CEO Israel Valesco said Tuesday. "We go all the way from Old Cutler to Stuart. That's a pretty large area to cover."
In a memo to staff, Mr. Valesco wrote, "The rationale behind the new structure has much to do with geography and creating a much more efficient lending process. Our region has grown tremendously during the last several years and therefore could no longer support the previous structure."
The bank's loan portfolio has grown from about $600 million to $1.6 billion in the past seven years.
The changes follow this month's resignation of senior lending officer Raul G. Valdes-Fauli. Three senior lenders who reported to Mr. Valdes-Fauli have been promoted to divide his responsibilities.
Mr. Valdes-Fauli started work Tuesday as senior lender at Union Bank's Sunrise office.