Jack Barrett, CEO and President of First Citrus Bank recently spoke to the Tampa Bay Times regarding bank expansion in Tampa Bay.
In early 2021, First Citrus Bank announced their upcoming bank location in St. Petersburg and how it relates to the market’s growth potential. It has been noted that the amount of physical bank branches has been trending downwards, with mobile banking taking up the slack, but that is not the case for Tampa Bay. For example, First Citrus Bank, which has five branches in Hillsborough County, is opening its first full-service bank in Pinellas County.
Barrett says that First Citrus Bank will do a lot of good for the St. Petersburg market. Logically, larger banks focus on redirecting transaction activity online in an effort to reduce their costs. Unfortunately, this also decreases the personal banking experience that local business owners appreciate. First Citrus Bank offers the convenient mobile banking, courier banking services and that human interaction that these individuals appreciate. Small business owners know their First Citrus bankers and know they are in good hands. And this is solidified more-so with convenient access to six brick-and-mortar First Citrus Bank locations in Tampa, St. Pete, and Brandon.
The article also touches on First Citrus Bank’s role in Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) lending. First Citrus Bank is the 45th largest bank in the state of Florida, yet it was ranked 7th in PPP lending. Barrett expresses this is because of the bank’s speed to market, operational flexibility and hours of dedicated associates who were willing to work long hours, 7 days a week, to assist the small businesses in the community.
As Barrett says, “Banking, at the end of the day, is still a face-to-face business, especially at the small business level. The only constant in business today is everyone’s need and desire to be treated with respect and dignity. And you’re going to get that.”
To read the complete interview, click the article: Why are Banks Expanding in Tampa Bay? First Citrus Bank’s CEO explains