|Traded as||TSX: VB|
|Headquarters||London, Ontario, Canada|
|David Taylor, President & CEO|
VersaBank, formerly Pacific & Western Bank of Canada, is a Canadian chartered bank that was founded in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan in 1980 as a trust company. It later moved its head offices to London, Ontario, and on August 1, 2002, it was granted a Schedule I Canadian chartered bank licence by the Canadian federal government, the first in approximately 18 years. The bank is publicly traded as VB on the Toronto Stock Exchange.
VersaBank is a branchless financial institution, choosing to invest instead in a technology based platform. Entrepreneur and founder of the bank, David Taylor, designed the electronic branchless platform. Beginning in 1993, the existing Pacific & Western Bank, a small trust company with six branches and a need for capital investment, reconfigured itself into a branchless bank based on online banking. By 2013 the bank became Canada's tenth largest publicly traded bank when it began trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange. In 2017 the bank completed a revision of its ownership structure that included a merger with its largest stockholder, PWC Capital, reported to be "the first merger between a Schedule 1 bank and a holding company operating under the Canadian Business Corporations Act".
The bank's deposits have been raised digitally by way of a comprehensive broker network situated throughout Canada. In 2016, there were over 120 deposit broker firms raising its deposits, including many of the in-house brokerage firms of the big six Canadian banks. Its lending portfolio consists of commercial and corporate lending, real estate and development financing, and an innovative, state-of-the-art bulk purchase program. The bank's target market is well-established Canadian corporate entities.
In May 2016, the bank changed its name to VersaBank because Versa is the prefix for versatile and because Pacific & Western had little direct relevance given the bank’s national and virtual focus.
- "Pacific & Western Bank of Canada Plans to Change Name to VersaBank as Part of Rebranding", Business Wire, March 16, 2016
- Wallace Immen, "Canadian who foresaw online banking was ahead of his time", The Globe and Mail, December 2, 2013.
- Barry Critchley, "VersaBank and parent PWC Capital try to unlock value by simplifying structure", Financial Post, September 13, 2016.
- Barry Critchley, "The low-leveraged, high-margin VersaBank set to trade as stand-alone entity", Financial Post, February 1, 2017.
- Google Finance
- Barry Critchley, "Under the radar VersaBank, formally Pacific & Western Bank of Canada, posting strong metrics", National Post, June 3, 2016.