Vineyard Bank, a rapidly expanding Riverside and Inland Empire bank, is starting to turn its attention south and west to San Diego.
And Chief Executive Norman Morales is clear on his expansion tactics: hiring top relationship bankers from competitors.
"It is all keyed around the relationships that clients have with their bankers," said Morales from his Corona office. "So our target has been we don't go after the client, we go after the relationship bankers and it is they, with their portfolios and their clients, who make up what we believe is our ideal mix."
He targets bankers both in small community banks who want access to greater resources and those in big banks facing reorganization. But the key is always the same: bankers who are "entrepreneurial."
Vineyard's growth over the past five years has been rapid and organic. Vineyard's assets have grown to around $1.6 billion, with a market capitalization of $280 million.