Meet the 2016 Innovation Award Recipients

ia16_webIndependent Banker® magazine recognizes three community banks that overcame challenges and achieved excellence through resourceful thinking and innovative problem solving, such as rebuilding critical banking channels, going digital-only and teaming up with proactive industry partners. This year’s panel of judges evaluated submissions from community bankers across the country who showcased how new ways of doing business increased their efficiencies or profitability before selecting those that received final recognition.
(listed in alphabetical order)

CBW Bank

suresh-headshot_final-5-23-15Branch Location: Weir, Kan.
Asset size: $22 million
CBW Bank’s Chairman and Chief Technology Officer Suresh Ramamurthi oversaw one of the first bank account overhauls in years. Through the use of Yantra Financial Technologies—a banking technology company run by Ramamurthi—CBW Bank created the industry’s first digital banking architecture that allowed for real-time payments across multiple channels. Known as ONECard, the service has set the foundation for multiple event-driven and event-based applications. For example, if a customer were filling up a cloud-connected car at a gas station (the event), swiping her debit card could trigger a verification of the car’s vehicle identification number, as well as view the miles since the last fill-up to confirm the transaction makes sense. Not only does it add a sense of financial security, but also can allow parents to limit how far
from home their children can drive.

River Valley Bank

nageltoddBranch Location: Wausau, Wis.
Asset size: $1.07 billion
At the inception of IncredibleBank, the online-only division of River Valley Bank, its sole service was high-interest deposit accounts. Targeted to customers across all 50 states, the digital branch’s core deposits steadily grew to the point of surplus in the years following its 2009 start. Due to its success, River Valley Bank decided to expand IncredibleBank’s service in 2016 to include luxury motor-home financing, a niche market it found to be “underserved.” With IncredibleBank offering RV loans up to $2 million, it hopes to continue growing its national lending service at the same rate as its deposits.

United Texas Bank

michael-khaleq-photoBranch Location: Dallas, Texas
Asset size: $317 million
As a bank that had historically been real estate centric, United Texas Bank was faced with a challenge that many community banks deal with: diversifying its loan book without lessening its core deposit percentages and noninterest income. In response to this problem, Michael Khaleq, the bank’s senior vice president of lending, suggested it create a platform where United Texas Bank and other community banks could access the Shared National Credits market for syndicated loans, which would provide fully funded commercial and industrial loan balances. In less than 18 months, the bank was able to diversify its syndicated loan portfolio and grow it to $65 million.

2016 IB Innovation Awards is sponsored by Automated Systems, Inc.