As West Michigan Community Bank
moves ahead with plans for opening new branches in Zeeland and downtown Grand Rapids, 11 new financial industry jobs have come online to fulfill operations needs for both locations.
A temporary location in Zeeland (59 W. Washington) will open on Feb. 20 and will remain open until construction of the new branch at Washington and State streets is completed in 2013.
The downtown Grand Rapids branch in the Waters Building (177 Ottawa Ave. NW) in a former Huntington Bank location is under construction and will open April 9.
Both branches will employ a branch manager, an assistant manager, a retail (mortgage) lender and two tellers. The Grand Rapids branch will also have a commercial lender on staff.
Two teller positions for the Grand Rapids office are still open, says Philip Koning, president and CEO. He adds that a growth boom over the past year has resulted in other new positions at the bank's Hudsonville headquarters (5367 School Ave.) and its offices in Jenison and Holland.
"We've gone from 40 people to over 60 people in the past year," Koning says. "We have been hiring in other branches, expanded operations and expanded our mortgage and commercial lending areas."
Koning says the growth has occurred because of an influx of capital when Bad Axe-based Northstar Financial Group purchased West Michigan Community Bank in February 2011.
"They invested a large amount of capital, so we have both the people and the capital to grow and that's what we want to do," Koning says. "We've seen significant growth in the small and medium sized business lending area, and have seen growth in residential loans as housing grows here in West Michigan. We're seeing people [who moved away] returning to West Michigan for jobs."
Source: Philip Koning, West Michigan Community Bank
Writer: Deborah Johnson Wood, Development News Editor