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Cathay Bank History

In 1962, Cathay Bank opened for business with the mission of providing financial services to the growing but underserved Chinese-American community in the greater Los Angeles area, thus becoming the first Chinese-American bank in Southern California. Recognizing that the community it served was part of a more diverse one, Cathay Bank adopted the motto "An Open Door for All." Its rapid expansion was fueled by successive waves of immigration, burgeoning trade between America and Asia, and the economic development of the surrounding community.

Today, Cathay Bank is a subsidiary of Cathay General Bancorp (NASDAQ: CATY), a publicly held bank holding company with over $10.69 billion in assets as of December 31, 2012. Its service network extends from the West Coast to New York and Massachusetts on the Eastern Seaboard, north to the state of Washington, and south to Texas. Overseas, it has a presence in the three important commercial centers in the Asian-Pacific Rim, Hong Kong, Taipei and Shanghai.

 

MILESTONES:

1962 Cathay Bank's 1,000-square-foot storefront office opens in Los Angeles Chinatown as the first Chinese-American commercial bank in California.
 
 
1979 Cathay Bank opens its first branch office in Monterey Park to meet the needs of the area's growing number of Asian immigrants.
 
 
1984 Cathay Investment Company, a wholly owned subsidiary of Cathay Bank, forms.
 
 
1985 Cathay Bank establishes its first overseas representative office in Hong Kong, providing a direct communication link with its customers in Asia.
 
 
1987 Cathay Investment Company establishes an office in Taiwan to help overseas clients make real estate investments in Southern California.
 
 
1990 Cathay Bancorp, Inc., is formed as the bank-holding company of Cathay Bank to diversify the Bank's financial products and customer base. On December 14, its shares begin trading on the NASDAQ under the symbol "CATY."
 
 
1994 Cathay Bank is designated as a "Ten-Year Continued Premier Performing Bank,"1 placing Cathay Bank among the top six California financial institutions for strength, performance and safety. Cathay Bank is the only Chinese-American commercial bank among 300 California banks to reach this milestone.
 
 
1996 Cathay Bank acquires the Los Angeles-based First Public Savings Bank. The acquisition is a financial milestone, making Cathay Bank, with combined assets of $1.5 billion, the 16th-largest bank in California.
 
 
1997 Cathay Bank acquires the deposits of the Lippo Bank's Westminster branch in Orange County, California, bringing the Bank's services to another 700 customers.
 
 
1998 Cathay Bank is awarded the "Premier Performing Bank"1 by Findley Reports for exceeding the standards for growth, performance and financial soundness.
 
 
1999 To diversify the Bank's services geographically, Cathay Bank opens its first loan production office in Houston, Texas. The Houston Loan Production Office provides a variety of commercial lending services to meet the varied financial needs of the area's burgeoning Asian population.

The acquisition of certain assets of Golden City Commercial Bank in New York spearheads another new era for the Chinese-American banking industry. Cathay Bank becomes the first local Chinese-American financial institution to offer full banking services in the three largest Asian markets in the U.S.: California, New York and Texas.
 
 
2000 Cathay Bank is designated a "Super Premier Performing Bank" - the highest recognition in California's banking industry - placing Cathay Bank in the top ranks for strength, performance and safety.

Cathay Bancorp, Inc. becomes one of the 100 largest financial companies listed on the NASDAQ National Market, based on market capitalization.

Cathay Bank converts its Houston Loan Production Office to a full-service branch.
 
 
2001 Cathay Bancorp, Inc. ranks 25th among the nation's 300 best-performing publicly traded banking companies, and second highest among such companies based in California.
 
 
2002 Cathay Bancorp, Inc. ranks 8th as the most efficient bank-holding company among the largest 500 nationwide, and is the highest ranked among such companies based in California.2

Cathay Bank establishes an overseas representative office in Shanghai, China. The new expansion provides Cathay Bank with new market opportunities, and serves as a point of contact with Cathay Bank for customers doing business in China.

To expand its banking network, Cathay Bank opens new branches in Sacramento, California, and Brooklyn, New York.
 
 
2003 GBC Bancorp merges into Cathay Bancorp, Inc. and General Bank merges into Cathay Bank, creating the largest Asian-American banking corporation - Cathay General Bancorp. Cathay Bank's network now has a presence in the State of California, New York, Massachusetts, Texas and Washington.

Cathay Bank achieves its 10th consecutive year of double-digit growth.
 
 
2004 Cathay General Bancorp ranks 11th as the most efficient bank holding company among the nation's 500 largest, and is the highest ranked among such companies based in California.3
 
 
2005 Cathay General Bancorp receives the Honor Roll Award by Keefe, Bruyette & Woods to recognize its achievement of reporting 10 consecutive years of increases in earnings per share.

On October 27, Cathay General Bancorp becomes a member of the Standard & Poor's (S&P) MidCap 400 Index, the first company founded by Chinese-Americans to be included in this group.

Cathay Bank establishes a representative office in Taipei, Taiwan, to further strengthen its overseas presence and to assist customers in their commercial and investment activities in the Asia-Pacific Rim region.

In an effort to expand its service areas, Cathay Bank opens new branches in Seattle, Washington, and Soho, New York.
 
 
2006 Cathay Bank purchases Great Eastern Bank in New York and New Asia Bank in Illinois.
 
 
2007 Cathay Bank converts its Hong Kong Representative office into a full service branch.

Cathay General Bancorp acquires United Heritage Bank, marking its presence in the state of New Jersey.

Cathay Bank opens a branch in Ontario, California, a second branch in Texas and a third branch in Washington State.
 
 
2008 Cathay General Bancorp ranks 9th as the “Most Efficient Bank Holding Company” among the largest 500 by the American Banker magazine, based on 4th quarter, 2008 financials. In California it is ranked number 2.
 
 
2009 Cathay Bank opens a new branch in Dublin, Northern California.

Cathay General Bancorp reports the highest in net income among Chinese American banking companies in the United States, for the first quarter of 2009.

Grand Opening of the Cathay Bank Corporate Center located in El Monte, CA.
 
 
2010 On June 19, 2010, Monte Jade Science and Technology Association of Southern California presents a “Distinguished Business Achievement” award to Cathay Bank and Mr. Peter Wu, Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Operating Officer to recognize their Business Achievements and Community Service.

Cathay Bank installs a solar energy system atop its Corporate Center’s carport in El Monte, to further enhance the building’s environmental friendliness.

Cathay General Bancorp celebrates its 20th anniversary of trading on NASDAQ and rings the opening bell in Times Square, New York on December 14, 2010.
 
2012 Cathay Bank celebrates its 50th anniversary.
 
2013 Cathay Bank opens its first branch in Las Vegas, Nevada.

WHAT'S AHEAD...


For five decades, Cathay Bank has built a successful business based on providing excellent service to its primarily Chinese-American community. In the decades to come, Cathay Bank will continue to expand its domestic network. As it gains financial strength and reach, Cathay Bank will be able to reinforce its "Open Doors" policy and bring its brand of service to the neighboring communities where it serves. With its roots firmly in America, its understanding of the culture and business practices of Asia, its vast experience in trade finance, and its extensive correspondent bank relationships, Cathay Bank will become the clear bank of choice for companies doing business between America and Asia, the world's fastest-growing and most powerful economies.
1. Source: Findley Reports, Anaheim, California, is a recognized bank research and rating firm since 1968.
2. Source: American Banker, February 20, 2003.
3. Source: American Banker, June 23, 2005.

 


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