East West Bank

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East West Bancorp, Inc.
Public company
S&P 400 Component
Industry Financial Services
Founded 1973; 44 years ago (1973) in Los Angeles, California
Headquarters Pasadena, California
Number of locations
130 branches[1]
Key people
Dominic Ng (Chairman, and Chief Executive Officer)
Gregory L. Guyett (President and COO)
Irene H. Oh (EVP and CFO)
Douglas P. Krause (General Counsel)
Emily Wang (Director of Marketing)[1]
Services Banking
Revenue Increase US$1.319 billion (2016)[1]
Increase US$0.431 billion (2016)[1]
Total assets Increase US$34.788 billion (2016)[1]
Total equity Increase US$3.427 billion (2016)[1]
Number of employees
2,873 (2016)[1]
Capital ratio 10.9% (2016)[1]
Website eastwestbank.com
East West Bank branch in the Chinatown neighborhood of San Francisco.

East West Bank (traditional Chinese: 華美銀行; simplified Chinese: 华美银行; pinyin: Huáměi Yínháng), the primary subsidiary of East West Bancorp, Inc., is a bank based in Pasadena, California.[1] It was founded in 1973 to serve the Chinese American community and has over 130 branch locations in the U.S and Greater China, including branches in northern and southern California, Georgia, Nevada, Massachusetts, New York, Texas and Washington.[1] In Greater China, East West’s presence includes 5 full service branches in Hong Kong, Shanghai, Shantou and Shenzhen, and representative offices in Beijing, Chongqing, Guangzhou, Taipei and Xiamen.[1]

The Chinese name is not a direct translation of east and west, rather it is two characters, which depend on context. 華 can mean magnificent or splendid, but is often used in conjunction with other characters to refer to China and Chinese overseas. Likewise 美 can mean 'pretty' or 'USA, American'.[2]


East West Bank in Chinatown, Houston

In 1973, East West Federal Bank was founded by F. Chow Chan, Betty Tom Chu, Richard K. Quan, Gilbert L. Leong, Philip Chow, John A Nuccio, Christopher L. Pocino, and John M. Lee.[3] Its focus was to serve the Chinese American community in Southern California.

In 1991, during the savings and loan crisis, the company acquired Pacific Coast Savings, which increased the bank's assets from $600 million to $1 billion and expanded operations to San Francisco, California.[2]

By 1992, the bank had $1.4 billion in assets.[3]

In 1992, Dominic Ng was named the Chairman, CEO and President of the company, replacing Kellogg Chan who retired.[3]

East West Bank became a state-chartered commercial bank on July 31, 1995.[4]

In 1999, the company acquired First Central Bank for $13.5 million in cash.[5]

In August 2004, the company acquired Trust Bank, a Chinese American bank based in Monterey Park, California with 4 branches and $235 million in assets, for $32.9 million.[6][7]

In September 2005, the company acquired United National Bank, a commercial bank headquartered in San Marino, California with 11 branches and $665 million in loans receivable, for $177.9 million.[2][8]

In March 2006, the company acquired Standard Bank, a Chinese-American bank headquartered in Monterey Park, California with 6 branches and $923 million in assets, for $200 million.[8][9][10]

In August 2007, the company acquired Desert Community Bank, a community bank operating in the Victor Valley region of California. Desert Community Bank branches remain branded as such and did not change to East West Bank.[11]

In 2009, the company acquired the assets of United Commercial Bank (UCB), via a transaction facilitated by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. This expanded East West Bank's reach by 63 branches, including 17 in Southern California, and branches in the Chinese American communities of Houston, Boston, and Atlanta, as well as branches in Hong Kong and China.[12][13][14]

In January 2010, Irene H. Oh was promoted to EVP and CFO, replacing Thomas J. Tolda, who resigned.[15]

In 2010, the company acquired the assets, including 4 branches, of Washington First International Bank of Seattle, Washington, via a transaction facilitated by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.[16][17][18][19]

In 2014, the company acquired MetroCorp Bancshares, which operated MetroBank, for $268 million in cash and stock.[20][21]

In October 2016, Gregory L. Guyett was appointed as the President and COO of the company.[22]

Sponsors and endorsements[edit]

The bank's spokeswoman was figure skater Michelle Kwan.[23]

East West Bank purchased the naming rights to the East West Ice Palace, an ice rink arena in Artesia, California.[23]

East West Bancorp was the sponsor of the 2007 East West Bank Classic, a tennis tournament on the Women's Tennis Association Tour.


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k East West Bancorp, Inc. 2016 Form 10-K Annual Report
  2. ^ a b c Chen, Liyan (January 19, 2016). "Meet The Chinese American Bank That Wants To Become Wells Fargo". Forbes Magazine. 
  3. ^ a b c "East West Bank 2007 Honorees". Chinese Historical Society of Southern California. 
  4. ^ East West Bancorp, Inc. 2014 Form 10-K Annual Report
  5. ^ "East West Bancorp Completes Acquisition of First Central Bank" (Press release). 
  6. ^ "East West Bancorp Enters Into Definitive Agreement for the Acquisition of Trust Bank" (Press release). PRNewswire. June 3, 2004. 
  7. ^ "East West Bancorp Closes Trust Bank Acquisition" (Press release). PRNewswire. August 9, 2004. 
  8. ^ a b East West Bancorp, Inc. 2005 Form 10-K Annual Report
  9. ^ "East West Bancorp and Standard Bank Enter Into Definitive Agreement for Strategic Merger" (Press release). PRNewswire. December 28, 2005. 
  10. ^ "East West Bancorp Closes Standard Bank Acquisition" (Press release). PRNewswire. March 17, 2006. 
  11. ^ "East West Bancorp Closes Desert Community Bank Merger" (Press release). PRNewswire. August 17, 2007. 
  12. ^ Reckard, E. Scott (November 7, 2009). "United Commercial Bank is shut down, sold to East West Bancorp". Los Angeles Times. 
  13. ^ Anderson, Mark (November 9, 2009). "United Commercial branches bought by East West Bank". American City Business Journals. 
  14. ^ Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Failed Bank Information for United Commercial Bank, San Francisco, CA
  15. ^ "East West Bancorp, Inc. Appoints Irene H. Oh Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer" (Press release). Business Wire. January 26, 2010. 
  16. ^ Grygiel, Chris (June 11, 2010). "Bad loans force closure of Seattle-based bank". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. 
  17. ^ Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Failed Bank Information for Washington First International Bank, Seattle, WA
  18. ^ DeSilver, Drew (June 11, 2010). "Regulators close Washington First International Bank". The Seattle Times. 
  19. ^ Grind, Kirsten (June 11, 2010). "Washington First bank closed, sold to California firm". American City Business Journals. 
  20. ^ "East West Bancorp Closes MetroCorp Bancshares Acquisition" (Press release). Business Wire. January 17, 2014. 
  21. ^ Wilkinson, Emily (January 23, 2014). "California bank boosts Texas footprint with MetroCorp deal". American City Business Journals. 
  22. ^ "East West Bancorp, Inc. Appoints Gregory L. Guyett as President and Chief Operating Officer" (Press release). Business Wire. October 5, 2016. 
  23. ^ a b ELLIOTT, HELENE (May 15, 2005). "Now Kwan Has a Rink of Her Own in Artesia". Los Angeles Times. 

External links[edit]