Arvest Bank Experiences Amazing Growth
By PAT SCHNAKE
BANKING LEADERS: Arvest Bank Executive Vice President Rick Huck, left, and President and CEO Don Walker have been instrumental in the success of the bank in the greater Tulsa area. Last month saw the bank average more than $1.5 billion in total assets in the Tulsa area. The photo was taken at the 502 S. Main St. location in downtown Tulsa.
LESLIE GREGORY for GTR Newspapers
Arvest Bank has displayed phenomenal growth since its entry into Oklahoma in 1991 with the acquisition of Village South National Bank and later that year with the purchase of State Federal. At the time, Arvest had less than $200 million in total assets in the Tulsa market.
Last month was Arvest’s first to average more than $1.5 billion in total assets in the Tulsa area, and the company also employs more than 600 in the metro area. In addition to its operations in Oklahoma, the Arvest Bank Group consists of banks in Arkansas, Kansas and Missouri, with total assets of $9.7 billion and nearly 4,500 employees.
Even with the impressive growth, Arvest still operates on its base philosophy of delivering the convenience and technology of larger super-regional banks, but with the local commitment and decision-making of a community bank, according to Arvest Executive Vice President Rick Huck.
“We want our customers to know that Arvest is a locally owned organization, and we’re a stable institution that has and always will strive to service the local communities we’re in,” says Huck. “We focus solely on our customers and their needs.”
Arvest is widely known in the community for its customer service and friendly employees. The bank was a forerunner in providing extended hours to meet the changing and hectic schedules of their customers. The majority of their branches are open 12 hours a day.
“Our mission is to first and foremost provide our customers with convenience, both in service and our operating hours, and in a friendly and warm atmosphere,” says Huck. “We live it everyday and it will always be there.”
Huck says the growth experienced by Arvest, particularly of late, is a good sign for residents in the area.
“Our growth is a reflection on our economy. Tulsa’s economy is doing well. And, when there is some economic turmoil like we’ve seen from a national perspective, Arvest benefits because we are a local bank and our customers take comfort in that,” says Huck.
Arvest is proud of its corporate citizenship and community support. Each year Arvest associates donate countless hours of their time in community service work. Arvest associates recently completed construction of their first home for Habitat for Humanity and plans more in the future.
“Being a community bank means being a part of the community and we take that responsibility seriously,” comments Huck.
Arvest also supports many worthy causes through financial contributions to non-profit organizations.
“Our growth has allowed us to be more active in the community not only from our associates but our financial support as well,” says Huck. “As we grow we’re able to do more and more for the community. Giving back to the community is important to us.”
As a community bank, face-to-face involvement is key component to Arvest’s success. In addition, the bank keeps up with constant changes in technology by continuing to offer the latest in high-tech banking and financial services.
“We are seeing a lot of our customers who are very comfortable dealing with new technology and don’t require as much of a personal relationship,” says Huck. “But, one of the great things about Arvest is that we have the capacity to provide the latest technology, but we will always be there for our customers that still like to visit one of our branches or at least have the option to do so. We provide convenience through the generational spectrum.”
Many people don’t realize that Arvest is one of the largest originators of home loans in the Tulsa area.
“We do a large volume of mortgage lending, and our customers enjoy having someone local to deal with in the complexities of buying a home,” said Huck. “We also service 99 percent of the loans we originate, so our customers can still deal with someone locally after their home purchase, which is important to a lot of people.” It is important to note that Arvest has not been involved in subprime lending that has negatively impacted some other banks in the United States.
Huck says Arvest will continue its mission of meeting and exceeding customer’s expectations through its convenient hours, extensive network of branches, competitive rates and pricing, technological innovation and offering a full line of banking, mortgage, investment, lending and wealth management services.
“It’s nice to know that there is someone local to deal with who will be there when you need them,” says Huck.
- — John Nov 15, 03:19 PM #