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Reliance Bank Featured In Ladue News

Reliance Bank: Making A Difference

For community financial institutions like Reliance Bank, being able to reach out to companies and help them grow is at the core of their belief system. Reliance is a commercial lender to many companies across the St. Louis region, including McClure Engineering.

Reliance Bank Chairman and CEO Thomas H. Brouster Sr. says that Reliance and McClure began working together on an acoustical site analysis and again when McClure outgrew its previous office located in south St. Louis.

“They found an 80,000-square-foot, six-story building on Clark Avenue that would allow them to house their main operations and utilize the additional space for other tenants,” Brouster says.

Built in 1896, the historic Cupples 1 building is part of the National Register of Historic Places and is located just a few blocks from Busch Stadium. Because of its size, McClure was able to work with Reliance on an owner-occupied building deal, where 50 percent or more is owned by the business.

Gaines Dittrich, vice chairman and chief credit officer for Reliance, says the partnership with McClure was an outstanding chance for Reliance to support more growth in the community.

“[The move] gave McClure the chance to expand and add more engineers,” Dittrich says. “They found a layout in the right space, and their future growth is tied to having the right kind of occupancy. In the process of doing that, they’ve brought additional growth to downtown. We were pleased to be able to accommodate their needs, including the details in relation to their tax abatement structure.”

Norm Toon, executive vice president and chief lending officer, notes that St. Louis’ market depends a great deal on middle market business because it’s very uncommon for large corporations to move their headquarters to St. Louis. “We see large corporations being acquired and subsequently moved out of our market,” Toon says. “However, we have been very successful in developing middle market companies to fill in the gaps when the large ones leave. Helping those companies grow, seeing them create jobs, and then watching them become the next great St. Louis business story is what makes our community special.

“Helping those middle market businesses grow is vital to Reliance and vital to the economy as a whole, and we want to help them with financing their next step,” Toon says.

Brouster notes that being a local bank and being able to personally establish relationships are what sets Reliance apart from bigger, out-of-state institutions.

“We’re thrilled about the relationship with McClure, and we’re always looking for midsize companies we can work side by side with,” he says.

Eric Schactman, McClure chief financial officer, says working with Reliance was a pleasure and speaks highly of the bank’s efficient, streamlined process: “Like McClure Engineering, Reliance was very detailed and thorough, making sure everything was covered and all the documentation was complete.”

Source: Ladue News

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