January 14, 2004

How does a community bank compete with regional or national banks?

Our strategy is to provide services via technology and to try to provide the upgraded and latest technology innovations so customers can receive their banking services in the fashion that they like. Whether they like to go online, or use telephone banking, we would like to provide it that way. But also, as a traditional community bank, it is servicing the community in the small-business market on a person-to-person basis, trying to give the customer the best of both worlds. We believe that over the next several years, the customer base is going to want to bank in a more electronic environment where it's convenient for them. So we deliver the personal touch, but we also understand, especially for the younger generation, that they are more of a high-tech orientation and they want us to deliver services that way. An example is the Villanova ATM: taking a traditional delivery channel, spruce it up, make it very friendly so the people at the university like it. We should be able to capture some of those users and get them as customers, with the laffinity side of being able to get the personalized Villanova debit card and checking account. Loyalty will be built so when they graduate and move on to the real world, they will continue to use our financial services and continue to use our ATMs wherever they end up.