June 12, 2006
Banking By the Bootstraps
Klein, Business New Haven
New community bank dreams big by thinking small
A bank where the manager knows you by name. A bank that can see beyond a
credit blip and get you that loan to expand your business. That's the kind of
bank Mark Candido wants to bring back to the New Haven area - and he hopes
Candido and partner Richard Barredo are looking for a
few more backers to buy shares in the Quinnipiac Bank & Trust Company, which
opened an initial stock offering on April 10. The state granted the bank the
temporary charter on January 2.
As of June 6, more than 40 percent of the
shares had been sold, with Candido confident the entire $13 million in equity
capital would be raised by the July 7 deadline. "Our checks are starting to
build up some steam," Candido says. "The response has been very good so
The duo has narrowed the search for a main branch to two parcels in
Hamden and expects to sign a lease in the next month.
Both veterans of
the Bank of New Haven, Candido and Barredo say they have wanted to start a new
bank for years.
"We are community bankers at heart," Candido says. "It's
in our blood. We believe [large banks] in effect ignore the smaller to
medium-sized commercial business and some of the consumers. They can't bend."
Quinnipiac will target such smaller companies, and also offer a full suite of
individual bank products like home loans and certificates of deposit.
bank's main competitive advantage will be its board of directors, culled from
local business leaders who can act as rainmakers and boosters in the community,
Candido says. "It's not a secret: You use the board to bring in your business,"
he says. "It's like a built-in marketing department."
Recent mergers and
consolidations have opened up a niche for a new community bank, explains Susan
Monti, a managing director and banking analyst for Ostrowski & Co. in
Cheshire. "Theirs is a business model we believe that can be a success," she
says. "Those are markets that pretty much do not have a homegrown bank any
"The other critical element is management," says Monti. "There
you have two pretty strong people. It look like they have all the elements to
make it a success."
But Monti cautions that would-be investors in the
bank should realize that they are buying an illiquid security that may not trade
publicly for years. "It's really a much longer-term investment," she notes.
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