Steve Cleveland, President and CEO, and the board of directors of First National Bank of Chadron announced a merger with its’ affiliate Homestead Bank. The change is expected to be finalized prior to July 1, 2021, pending regulatory approval.
“With a great deal of consideration, we have decided to join forces with our affiliate bank, Homestead Bank of Cozad, NE. Homestead and First National have shared common ownership since 1990,” said Cleveland. “Even though we operate independently, we have shared resources behind the scenes. Our operating systems and locally focused business cultures are identical.”
Chairman of the board for both Homestead bank and First National Bank of Chadron, Leland Spanjer, stated, “Homestead Bank and First National Bank of Chadron are committed to community banking in Nebraska. With locations in Cozad, Lexington, St. Paul, Wolbach, Albion, Schuyler and Howells, Homestead Bank has served central and eastern Nebraska for many years. The Chadron and Ainsworth locations of First National Bank will continue to serve their communities while sharing the name and the resources that Homestead Bank provides to community banking across the entire state.”
Economies of scale prompted the strategic decision. Homestead and First National have duplicated many processes throughout the years, namely audit and regulatory compliance. By joining forces and resources, it will become more efficient, resilient, and customer focused. This decision will keep the locally focused bank relevant for many years to come. No personnel or management changes are planned.
Cleveland noted, “This strategic decision has been in the works for some time. It just makes good sense to do it now. Our customers and communities will experience few changes, other than a change of name.”