It’s always refreshing to learn about Nevada businesses that are not only enjoying healthy growth, but are surpassing all projections, while making a significant contribution to the community. One such company is Reno-based First Independent Bank of Nevada.
Founded in September 1999 by Grant Markham and John Dedolph, First Independent Bank of Nevada has been growing at an unprecedented rate, doubling original projections. According to Markham, the bank’s president and CEO, “We had originally projected we’d be at $100 million in assets within four years. However, we have already more than doubled this estimate with over $200 million in assets. We are very proud of the fact that we have been profitable since our eighth month in business. Most banks don’t reach a profit level for one or two years,” shared Markham.
Markham credits much of the bank’s success to its employees. Many of the bank’s 55 employees are long-time bankers from the Reno/Sparks area who know the community and are experienced in banking relationships.
One year ago, First Independent Bank of Nevada conducted a survey to gauge its customers’ satisfaction level. Markham was happy to report that 98 percent of customers felt they received the level of service they needed.
This level of satisfaction will undoubtedly help First Independent Bank of Nevada maintain a competitive advantage in the burgeoning Reno banking marketplace, where a number of new community banks have recently opened. According to Markham, this is partly because within the last six years, all but one community bank was sold to regional or national banks. “Today, new banks are once again opening. Coupled with the growth of Northern Nevada and the economy, the opportunity is ripe for new community banks in this area,” Markham said.
Since First Independent Bank of Nevada opened its doors for business, it has been focused on growth opportunities in both loans and deposits. It is now busy expanding its presence beyond the current two Truckee Meadows branches. Construction on the bank’s new head office, located on Kietzke Lane in Reno, is underway and it is expected to open in September. First Independent Bank of Nevada also recently purchased land in west Reno, where construction for a new branch will begin this summer. “We plan to continue to grow with new branches and offices and expand our market share in the local community. Plus, we are very interested in the Carson City and Minden/Gardnerville areas,” Markham stated.
First Independent Bank of Nevada projects opening a new branch every 12 to 18 months. It will also work to accomplish the same growth rates it has enjoyed in the past five years, when it has grown at nearly $50 million a year.
First Independent Bank of Nevada feels very strongly that as a community bank, it should be involved in the community in which it operates. According to Markham, “We are as generous as we can be in budgeting donations and involvement in the community. In 2003, we donated nearly $60,000 to about 70 local organizations. Further, a number of our employees represent our bank when involved with charitable organizations.”
First Independent Bank of Nevada focuses primarily on the banking needs of local business clients and professionals. The bank offers a wide array of loan and deposit products tailored to the needs of the business community. It also offers a full range of consumer deposit and loan products geared to meet personal banking needs.