The nation’s largest correspondent bank (see definition below) is changing its name to ‘Silverton Bank.’
The bank hopes that the name change will eliminate confusion in the marketplace. Out of 22 correspondent banks in the United States, 20 use “Banker’s Bank” in their names, including:
- Bankers Bank
- The Bankers Bank
- The Independent Bankers Bank
- Independent Bankers Bank
- First National Bankers Bank
- United Bankers Bank
- Community Bankers Bank
“It’s hard to differentiate
yourself when you have
essentially the same name.”
– Tom Bryan, Silverton CEO
“There are big differences between us and our competitors in terms of size and the breadth of services offered, but it’s hard to differentiate yourself when you have essentially the same name,” said Tom Bryan, President and CEO of Silverton Bank, formerly The Bankers Bank. “We just want to distinguish ourselves from our competitors, and we think this new name will help achieve that goal.”
The name change is a byproduct of the bank’s conversion to a national charter back in August 2007.
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Apparently, Silverton Bank has not yet applied for trademark protection. There is only one ‘Silverton’ registered under financial services with the USPTO, and that trademark is limited to extended warranties on boats and yachts manufactured by Silverton Marine Corporation. Silverton Marine is also the owner of www.silverton.com.
There are only 40 total trademarks for ‘Silverton’ in various industries on file with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office, 17 of which are dead.
Bottom Line: This is a smart move on the bank’s part. Being the largest player in any category means you have to work even harder to differentiate your brand from others. Johnny-come-latelys will always try to clone a leader’s success.
Silverton is accomplishing their objective to distinguish themselves amidst a sea of sameness by shunning me-too naming conventions: Who says a banker’s bank must have “bankers bank” in its name?
The new Silverton name has positive connotations for the financial services sector. It suggests “a ton of silver.” The name is easy to say and spell. It is reasonably short and easily recalled.
This relatively unique name would likely receive trademark protection from the USPTO within the financial services category… if they apply for it (and they should — immediately).
What is a correspondent bank? A correspondent bank accepts deposits and performs services for the independent community banks it serves. Correspondent banks are owned, operated, and directed by shareholders who are also bank customers. (Can you say, “Credit unions for banks?”) According to The Nation’s Bankers’ Bank, there are 22 correspondent banks serving a combined total of 6,000 community banks. Silverton serves more than 1,500 of them.