Guilford Savings Bank is a Connecticut bank with $742 million in assets and a 143 year history. The bank has stated that their strategic growth plan is to double or triple in size over the next ten years.
Guilford recently selected a new technology solutions payment processing services firm in Jack Henry Banking to align with its expansion ambitions. In addition to potential acquisitions, Guilford is looking to strengthen its fintech offerings in order to reach its aggressive goals. David Finnerty, SVP and senior operations officer for Guilford Savings Bank, said, “Jack Henry is both a cultural and a technological fit for Guilford Savings Bank. The company has an open infrastructure that our previous provider wasn’t able to deliver, allowing us to integrate with the best solutions available. What’s more, they are providing us a package of competitive services that would have been too onerous or costly to select individually, including a feature-rich digital experience, a sophisticated commercial cash management platform, and predictive analytics for risk mitigation. These services offer the same caliber of experience as the larger banks, while maintaining the personal focus that makes us stand out.”
Banks in the $1 billion range such as Guilford have to make some strategic calls for their technology partners. One of the keys is to be able to expand their presence throughout a region even if it means no additional physical branches. Personal support and communication with customers will be crucial, while having enough brick and mortar location for a personal touch when needed. In this case, the bank will also look to expand to new regions while servicing its base, likely with the number of physical locations to stay the same.
Anne Tedstone, SVP and bank technology officer for Guilford Savings Bank, said, “Every interaction we’ve had with Jack Henry holds true to their philosophy to ‘do the right thing, do whatever it takes, and have fun.’ Our values and culture are aligned, and our sights are mutually set on improving communities in which we work.” Guilford Bank’s vision for expansion verses survival is an appealing model for banks with a strong regional brand.