News - Feature Story
New Hampshire Mutual Bancorp Welcomes Savings Bank of Walpole
December 14, 2017
New Hampshire Mutual Bancorp (NHMB) announced today that it has signed an agreement with Savings Bank of Walpole (SBW) to join the organization.
New Hampshire Mutual Bancorp, a mutual holding company, was formed in 2013 when two New Hampshire-based community banks, Merrimack County Savings Bank (the Merrimack) and Meredith Village Savings Bank (MVSB) formally affiliated – the first relationship of its kind in New Hampshire. In 2015, MillRiver Wealth Management became the third subsidiary when it was created from the investment services arms of MVSB and the Merrimack.
With New Hampshire roots reaching more than 150 years, this alliance enhances the ability of each company to better serve its customers and communities. As part of the alliance, each affiliate bank retains its name and state charter, with separate management teams and separate boards of directors that will continue to oversee the operations of their respective organizations.
In addition, after over 40 years with the organization, NHMB President & CEO Sam Laverack has announced his retirement effective June 30, 2018. Gregg Tewksbury, the current President & CEO of Savings Bank of Walpole, has been selected to succeed Laverack as President & CEO of New Hampshire Mutual Bancorp. In this role, Tewksbury will lead the combined organization with the guidance of the boards and management teams of NHMB, SBW, MVSB, the Merrimack and MillRiver. He will maintain offices within all partner banks.
“One of the benefits of this alliance is the ability to tap into the leadership and expertise that Gregg will bring to our organization as a steward of mutual banking values in New Hampshire – and most importantly, in the individual communities served by our partner banks,” noted Laverack.
Effective July 1, 2018, Mark Bodin, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Savings Bank of Walpole, will be promoted to President of Savings Bank of Walpole.
“Mark is a skilled banker and principled leader, and I am confident that he will carry on the values that have served Savings Bank of Walpole and our community for nearly a century-and-a-half,” said Tewksbury.
Rick Wyman, Philip Emma and Paul Provost will remain Presidents of MVSB, the Merrimack and MillRiver respectively.
Through the holding company, these, healthy, independent community banks are in a position to optimize the strengths and competitive advantages of each organization. With combined resources, the overall company can better serve customers with significantly greater loan capacity, leading-edge products and services, and enhanced technology-based delivery systems.
Laverack and Tewksbury noted that they personally share a strong, mutual respect and trust and that the banks themselves enjoy similar corporate structures, histories and cultures. They pointed to the advantages of their complementary yet distinct market areas, and their fundamental commitments to delivering high quality customer services.
The management and boards of directors of each institution are committed to maintaining each bank’s status as an independent community bank and its mutual form of ownership. Laverack and Tewksbury share a firm belief that a mutual form of ownership clearly serves bank customers and communities best. A mutual holding company has no stockholders, which allows it to invest its profits more conservatively for long-term sustainability and sound growth. In addition, decision-making can be based on the longer-term benefits to the community, customers and employees as opposed to the immediate needs of stockholders and the market.
Tewskbury noted, “Our stability over the last few turbulent years has reinforced our belief in the mutual approach to ownership. Adding Savings Bank of Walpole to the fold at New Hampshire Mutual Bancorp makes it even more certain that we will prevail for generations to come.”
Laverack added, “We’re here to stay as local, mutual banks that will thrive, not just survive, for the future benefit of our customers, staff, and communities.”
As a result of this alliance, all of the organizations will be in a position to optimize the strengths and competitive advantages of each organization and to grow market share in their distinctive markets. With combined resources, the overall company will better position each affiliate bank to serve its customers with significantly greater loan capacity and leading edge products and services, and to implement enhanced technology-based delivery systems. It is anticipated that the organizations will be able to expand while managing expenses as they jointly develop new products and services. It is further anticipated that each affiliate bank will share some resources, thus affording each bank greater capacity for future growth. However, this will occur over time — years in most cases — as the needs and opportunities are identified.
The relationship will become effective upon final regulatory approval and a vote by the Corporators of NHMB and SBW.
About Savings Bank of Walpole
Founded in 1875, Savings Bank of Walpole is headquartered in Walpole and serves the Connecticut River Valley and Monadnock Regions of New Hampshire and Vermont from offices in Walpole and Keene. With assets totaling $400 million, the Bank offers a wide range of financial products, including services to individuals, businesses and organizations. The Bank’s SBW Wealth Management division offers financial planning services. Savings Bank of Walpole is an equal housing lender, and member of the FDIC. For more information visit www.walpolebank.com or call (603) 352-1822.
About New Hampshire Mutual Bancorp
New Hampshire Mutual Bancorp, a mutual holding company, was formed in 2013 when two New Hampshire-based community banks, Meredith Village Savings Bank and Merrimack County Savings Bank, formally affiliated – the first relationship of its kind in New Hampshire. This strategic partnership has positioned the banks to leverage each other’s strengths as they work together to advance a shared vision of maintaining and enhancing community banking standards and values. MillRiver Wealth Management joined as a third subsidiary of NHMB in 2015, combining the financial advisory divisions of MVSB and The Merrimack. NHMB combined assets total more than $1.6 billion.
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