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|Articles - April 2014|
|Thursday, March 27, 2014|
Page 2 of 3
President and CEO, Albina Community Bank
Oregon Business: Are small businesses better served by a community bank than a big bank or a credit union?
Cheryl Cebula: It depends on what the business needs and what they’re looking for. Do they want to be involved with a bank that takes the time to get to know them, that is willing to look for maybe more creative ways to help them with financing options or access to capital? Do they want to be with a bank that’s reinvesting back into the community? If you want to be treated like part of the local community and want to form a partnership with your bank, then yes, I do think that sometimes a community bank is a more viable option. That’s not to say that big banks and credit unions aren’t involved in the community.
OB: Do a lot of business customers prefer remote banking or, as a “neighborhood bank,” do they like to walk in for face-to-face service?
CC: For all of our locations a good majority of the business comes from the surrounding five-mile radius. Certainly businesses are more and more looking for alternative options, whether it’s mobile banking or remote capture, where they can make the deposits from their business. But there is a good number of people who like to come into the bank and know the people in the bank and the bank knows them. I do see that … as a small business owner, you spend a lot of your time, each and every day and on weekends, invested in your business, and it’s tough sometimes to get away to the bank.
OB: How does your bank serve businesses?
CC: We do a lot of small-business lending. We also work with a lot of nonprofit organizations and foundations. We have about 500 local nonprofits that are customers. So we work with a lot of smaller businesses, which I know some of the big banks aren’t necessarily interested in. We are interested in working with larger businesses that have more complex needs: professional-services firms, manufacturing, commercial- and industrial-type deals.
OB: What small businesses are growing?
CC: Breweries seem to be the latest and biggest thing. There are so many breweries in Portland right now — that’s a very hot industry. We bank a lot of them; [also] family-owned businesses, small manufacturing companies, professional-services firms and the single-person law firm.
OB: How has your bank been performing financially?
CC: For the last couple of years, we have been struggling as a community bank with some of the downturn. But we had a profitable year last year and expect that trend to continue. We’re seeing loan demand picking up. Our losses are down as we work through our problem loans. We deal with a lot of distressed communities and low- to moderate-income communities, so many of our customers were more impacted by the economic downturn. It certainly impacted us, but we worked our way through it.
Thursday, June 26, 2014
BY ERIC FRUTS | OB BLOGGER
Last year, the housing market in Oregon—and the U.S. as a whole—was blasting off. The Case-Shiller index of home prices ended the year 13% higher than at the beginning of the year. But, was last year a blip, or a trend?
Tuesday, July 08, 2014
BY LINDA BAKER | OB EDITOR
The New Yorker recently published a sharply worded critique of “disruptive innovation,” one of the most widely cited theories in the business world today. The article raises questions about the descriptive value of disruption and innovation — whether the terms are mere buzzwords or actually explain today's extraordinarily complex and fast changing business environment.
Update: We caught up with Portland's Thomas Thurston, who shared his data driven take on the disruption controversy.
Monday, July 14, 2014
BY TERRY "STARBUCKER" ST. MARIE
I really didn’t know that much about angel investing, but I did know a lot about the entrepreneurial spirit.
Monday, July 14, 2014
BY VIVIAN MCINERNY | OB BLOGGER
Some people think Amazon’s winking eye logo is starting to look like a hoodwink.
Tuesday, June 03, 2014
Citing the transition to catch shares management as a key to rebuilding stocks and reducing bycatch, 13 species caught by the West Coast trawl fishery today earned designation from the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) as sustainable.
Tuesday, July 01, 2014
BY HANNAH WALLACE | OB BLOGGER
Demand for organic food continues to soar: Last year, sales of organic food rose to $32.3 billion — up 10% from 2012. In Oregon, organic produce wholesaler Organically Grown Co. has been championing organic growing methods for four decades.
Friday, June 27, 2014
BY JASON NORRIS | OB BLOGGER
Over the last several months we have seen a wave of cross-border acquisitions, primarily U.S.-based companies looking to purchase non-U.S.-based companies. There are a few reasons for this, but the main culprit is the U.S. corporate tax system. The United States has one of the highest corporate tax rates in the world.
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Vigilant enters a New Year with a new president.
How George Fox has become one of Oregon's largest private universities.
Forest Grove sees growth in the burgeoning food and beverage scene.
Lane Powell Shareholder Susan K. Eggum has been elected as vice chair of programs and projects for the International Association of Defense Counsel’s (IADC’s) Employment Law Committee.
Geffen Mesher is saddened to announce the passing of long-time shareholder, Tom “Mike” Anderson, who died on July 10, 2014, from liver disease diagnosed after recent heart surgery. He was 55 years old.
Fifteen Lane Powell attorneys have been named 2014 “Oregon Super Lawyers,” and another five attorneys have been named as “Oregon Rising Stars” by Super Lawyers magazine.