Message from the President
I am pleased to report that the 165th celebratory year of Essex Savings Bank was one of our most profitable.
Founded in 1851, Essex Savings Bank is the 33rd oldest bank in the country. We have navigated throughout the years by staying true to our fiduciary responsibilities. The relationships we build are based upon sound principles of consultative advice. The breadth of services which span from simple school savings accounts to financial and estate planning makes us a perfect partner for you and your advisors. We are a mutual savings bank so we do not have shareholders – we have stakeholders who are here for the long haul and generations of believers who want the one-on-one customized financial service approach.
By running a sound and secure business, we have been able to expand our services and now employ 140 people.
Our lending philosophy has assisted many individuals and businesses grow and improve their personal and business financial statements.
Our assets increased this year by $25 million to $377 million while capital increased by $2 million to $44 million as of December 31, 2016 – far exceeding the requirement of the FDIC for the Bank to be considered well capitalized. As a source of pride, our credit quality remains well ahead of our peers. Our net income was $2.1 million, a 97% increase over last year when we incurred $848 thousand in extraordinary non-interest expenses. By strategically managing our margin with targeted increases of business loans and deposits, we improved net interest income by $1 million.
Additionally, we have undertaken further initiatives within Essex Financial Services, our wholly owned investment subsidiary, and our Trust Department, both of which are providing positive results.
Our Trust Department now manages assets exceeding $315 million and has brought revenue to $1.6 million – both are record levels.
Essex Financial Services reported gross revenue of $18 million for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2016. Assets under management grew to $3.6 billion at fiscal year-end. Our practice relies heavily on referrals from satisfied clients as well as from accountants, attorneys, bank employees and bank clients. Clients continue to appreciate the investment independence and service they receive from very knowledgeable and responsive advisors.
Our success continues to fund the Essex Savings Bank Community Investment Program, comprised of up to 10 percent of our after-tax net income that has been distributed to over 200 different qualified non-profits in our community over the years. Since inception in 1996, the Bank will have contributed $4.25 million, of which 30% percent was based directly by customer ballot selections. Additionally, we continue to support these local groups by donating our time and talents for worthy organizations such as the Shoreline Soup Kitchen, to serving as board members and volunteers on various non-profits and civic groups. Consequently, the better we perform in any given year, the better our community does through this partnership.
Essex Savings Bank continues to thrive proudly in our celebratory 165th year. We never lose sight of our forefathers’ goal – striving to build long-term relationships and maintain a safe financial harbor for the long haul.
We thank our clients, directors, trustees, officers and staff who support our mission to continue to provide valued service and trust to our community.
Gregory R. Shook
President & Chief Executive Officer