Chicago firm applies to be holding company for Arcola bank

Chicago firm applies to be holding company for Arcola bank

ARCOLA – A Chicago-based company has applied to become the holding company for tiny Arcola Homestead Savings Bank.

Chicago-based Arcola Holdings recently applied to the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago to become the bank's holding company by acquiring 100 percent of the bank's voting shares.

"It gives us a little more flexibility to go into other types of business and to bring in new investors if we need them," said Robert Franch, who became president of the bank in December. "But we're not changing ownership or anything like this."

Franch said there are no immediate plans to seek new investors.

"Right now we're well-capitalized," he said, adding that "if we grow and as we grow, we may need to capitalize."

As of Dec. 31, the savings bank listed $16.584 million in assets, according to a directory of thrifts compiled by the Illinois Office of Banks and Real Estate. The directory said the institution was established in 1883 and incorporated in 1993.

Franch said he succeeded James E. Severin, who moved on to a newly formed bank in Des Plaines. Severin is now vice president and cashier of Millennium Bank, which received its charter from the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation in June.

Franch said Severin is "a good friend" who recommended him for the position in Arcola.

"I've been in banking for about 35 years," Franch said. "I was previously president of a couple banks in the Chicago area. I was president of New City Bank in downtown Chicago and president of First Suburban Bank in Maywood from the mid-'80s to the mid-'90s."

Franch said the Arcola bank's board of directors has five members: Beth Vyverberg, Jeff Chambliss, Dr. Ronald Michael, Paul Dubuque and Louis Dubuque.

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