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Santa Barbara Bank Makes Strides in County


Santa Barbara Bank & Trust, hoping to scoop up customers displaced when the Bank of A. Levy was acquired by First Interstate Bank earlier this year, in February opened its first Ventura County branch in Camarillo. By April, branches in Oxnard and Ventura were also up and running.

The move has apparently paid off. According to Michael Murphy, vice president / marketing director of Santa Barbara Bank & Trust, the financial institution has almost reached its year-end goals for Ventura County.

"We'll achieve our goals in trust assets, deposits, all of our goals contributing to a particular earnings goal," Murphy said. "We thought we had an opportunity in Ventura County and we are happy we were right."

Santa Barbara Bank & Trust, which also has 12 branches in Santa Barbara County, reported a net income of $5.3 million for the first six months of 1995. Murphy would not disclose the income for the Ventura County branches.

Murphy said Ventura County banking customers like the personal attention that his bank and other independent institutions in the area can provide. "In Ventura County, there are a lot of small businesses, as well as individual customers, who desire responsiveness and personal attention," he said.

Murphy attributed a large part of his bank's success in Ventura County to the hiring of employees familiar with the area. "All the officers of our Ventura offices came from Ventura County banks," including many from the Bank of A. Levy.

Thirty-five-year-old Santa Barbara Bank & Trust has reported assets of $1.1 billion.

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