Continental Bank & Trust Co. has joined Tracy-Collins Bank, Walker Bank, Commercial Security Bank and others in the Utah financial industry's history book, as Continental officially became West One Bank on Saturday.
Some 300 newly christened West One Bank employees were to gather for a celebration at the Doubletree Hotel downtown for their first look at the new West One logo and for former Tracy-Collins and Continental workers to mingle and become further acquainted. Continental acquired Tracy last December.Later Saturday, the first West One Bank sign was to go up on the Continental (formerly Tracy-Collins) branch at 1375 Foothill Dr.
The name change also went into effect in Idaho, Washington and Oregon for other banks and subsidiaries of Boise-based Moore Financial Group which, itself, will change its name to West One Bancorp if Moore shareholders approve the action at the annual meeting April 21.
Two other Moore companies in Utah will also change their names Saturday. Moore Trust Co. and Moore Financial Services, a mortgage company, will both assume the West One name. Assuming stockholders approve the name change for the holding company (which is expected; shareholder approval is not necessary to change the names of the banks) the Moore name will disappear over the next few months.
West One Bank Utah President James C. Stewart said the name change was necessary to eliminate the potpourri of names under the Moore umbrella and create a unified identity for customers in its four-state area. Nevertheless, he said, West One Utah will remain independently managed and the local board of directors, consisting of Utah business and civic leaders, will remain intact and "very much in charge" of local bank policy.
He described the name change - everything from signs and letterheads to business cards and customer checks - as very expensive but necessary.
Meanwhile, former Continental and Tracy-Collins personnel will be gearing up for yet another change in coming weeks as Stewart and his staff move the West One Utah headquarters from the Continental Bank Building on the southwest corner of Main at 2nd South to the former Tracy-Collins building a block to the north on the southeast corner.
Stewart said it won't solve all of their space problems - chiefly parking - and will be only a short-term solution - one to five years. One of the options under consideration is to raze the Continental Building and construct a new West One headquarters on the site.
"This is a very inefficient building," said Stewart of the 2nd South facility. "But we still do a lot of (bank customer) business in the branch here."
Despite the move of the headquarters, West One will "for the foreseeable future" retain the bank branch in the Continental Building and the non-bank tenants in the building will stay. Stewart noted, though, that maintaining two branches of the same bank within a block of each other probably does not make sense in the long term.
With the Continental/Tracy-Collins merger, the new West One Bank Utah has $600 million in assets. Moore Financial Group has $3.9 billion in assets. Although the local bank intends to grow, Stewart said it won't be looking at further acquisitions anytime soon.
"We've got to make sure that what we've got is chugging along," he said. "It will take us (Continental and Tracy-Collins personnel) the rest of 1989 to get comfortable with each other. We really don't know each other yet."
Stewart joined Moore Financial in Boise in 1987 from the First National Bank of Kansas City, Mo., his hometown. He became chairman and president of Continental Bank and Trust in January 1987.