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|Traded as||NASDAQ: SBNY|
S&P 400 Component
|Industry||Banking, Financial Services|
|US$588.9 million (2019)|
|Total assets||US$53 billion (2019)|
|Total equity||US$4.7 billion (2019)|
Number of employees
|Subsidiaries||Signature Securities Group Corporation
Signature Financial LLCSignature Public Funding Corp.
Signature Bank is a New York-based full-service commercial bank with 35 private client offices throughout the New York, Connecticut, California, and North Carolina. Signature Bank's specialty finance subsidiary, Signature Financial LLC, provides equipment finance and leasing. Signature Securities Group Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary, is a licensed broker-dealer and investment adviser offering investment, brokerage, asset management, and insurance products and services.
As of 2019, the bank had total assets of $53 billion, deposits of $40.3 billion, and loans of $39.1 billion.
Signature Bank was founded in 2001. Founders Joseph J. DePaolo, the bank's current president and chief executive officer, Scott A. Shay, chairman of the board, and John Tamberlane, vice chairman and director, conceptualized the idea of a commercial bank that would cater to clients through a distinctive single-point-of-contact approach. This client-centric model focuses on serving the needs of privately owned businesses, their owners, and senior managers, an underserved market overlooked by competitors. Upon inception, the bank began competing against some of the nation's largest too-big-to-fail megabanks by catering to this market niche. This has since become the hallmark of Signature Bank's model and growth as it continues to target and successfully address the needs of this market. The bank completed its initial public offering in March 2004 and began trading on the NASDAQ under the symbol SBNY. In 2018, the bank expanded its footprint and commenced operations on the West Coast with the opening of its first private client banking office in San Francisco, California. In 2020, the bank continued its expansion throughout southern California, opening new offices in Newport Beach, Woodland Hills, and Ontario.
Relationship with Trump family
On July 13, 2018, The New York Times featured a full-length article on Signature Bank being the "go-to bank" to Donald Trump and the Trump family. The bank helped finance Trump's Florida golf course. President Trump's daughter Ivanka Trump served on Signature Bank's board of directors between 2011 and 2013, before stepping down on April 24, 2013. Over the past decade, the bank provided loans to people connected with the Trump Organization while Ivanka Trump sat on its board of directors.
Signature Bank offers business and personal banking products and services. Its specialty finance subsidiary, Signature Financial, provides equipment finance and leasing. Signature Securities Group Corporation, a wholly owned bank subsidiary, is a licensed broker-dealer, investment adviser and member of FINRA and SIPC, offering investment, brokerage, asset management and insurance products and services.
Signature Bank’s Fund Banking Division was created in 2018 to provide financing and banking services to the private equity industry.
The Venture Banking Group, which was formed in early 2019, serves venture capital firms and the portfolio companies in which they invest.
The Specialized Mortgage Banking Solutions team, whose focus is on servicing commercial and residential mortgage servicers among other related companies, launched in July 2019.
It has been dubbed "NY's most successful bank" by Crain's New York Business and was ranked as the Best Business Bank, Best Private Bank and Best Attorney Escrow Services provider by the readers of The New York Law Journal in the publication's 2018 survey for the third consecutive year; it was also awarded second place in the Best Private Bank category. In 2015, Forbes ranked the bank as No. 1 in its America's Best & Worst Banks evaluation. Forbes' 2016 ranking of it as No. 6 marked the sixth consecutive year that the bank was among the Forbes top ten.
In 2018, the bank's Signature Bank Building Improvement Initiative awarded grants totaling $500,000 to community-based not-for-profits to provide funds to improve housing conditions for those living in low-income housing apartments in New York. Each recipient received $100,000 to be used towards their respective buildings.
Chinacast Education Corporation v. Signature Bank
Chinacast Education Corporation filed a $35,000,000 lawsuit against Signature for fraud, money laundering, and failing to stop transfers of money to a fictitious investment holding company in the British Virgin Islands with no legitimate business purpose. Approximately 3 months after the case was opened, Chinacast Education Corporation dropped the case against the three banks named in the lawsuit – Signature Bank, Bank of China, and HSBC Bank. A voluntary dismissal was approved by Judge Swain and the cases against both Signature Bank and Bank of China were dismissed with prejudice.
West End Financial Advisors LLC Ponzi scheme
In early 2016, some investors filed suit against Signature after the company lost $66 million of investor cash in a Ponzi scheme run by William Landberg, a money manager who pleaded guilty to the crime. They alleged that Signature helped Landberg by ordering him to shift money around dozens of accounts to cover up long-term overdrafts. Landberg was sentenced to three and a half years in federal prison.
Signature Bank has been the center of numerous protests due to mistreatment of tenants by landlords who receive loans from the bank. Despite these accusations, the Association for Neighborhood & Housing Development has applauded the bank's commitment to responsible lending practices as it pertains to low and middle income tenants.
Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act
Barney Frank, both a former U.S. congressman (1981–2013) and a member of Signature Bank's board of directors (2015 – Present), voted in favor of raising the Dodd/Frank threshold. He's also gone on record stating “My being on the board has not changed my position on this at all. These efforts began well before I began at Signature Bank.”
Signature Bank has provided financial support for re-election races to a number of US Senators for their support of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act, according to Federal Election Commission data tallied by the Center for Responsive Politics. This bill exempted Signature Bank from post-crisis oversight rules. “We find it ridiculous and unacceptable that by virtue of … growing one day past $50bn, we will be burdened with rules intended for the mega 'too big to fail' banks,” Scott Shay, chairman of Signature, said.
- "FDIC Proxy Statement". July 13, 2020.
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- Bockmann |, Rich (August 30, 2017). "Banks say they were totally blindsided by Public Advocate's "worst landlords" list". The Real Deal New York.CS1 maint: extra punctuation (link)
- "ANHD Applauds Signature Bank's Newly Released Commitment to Best Practices for Multifamily Real Estate Lending". Association for Neighborhood and Housing Development. August 30, 2018. Retrieved March 13, 2019.
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