Latest NewsSeptember 23, 2015
Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), the Largest Bank in the World, Announces its First Office in the Seattle Region
Seattle office is the first expansion after ICBC’s acquisition of the former Bank of East Asia
SEATTLE (September 23, 2015) — The Economic Development Council of Seattle & King County (EDC) is excited to welcome Industrial and Commercial Bank of China’s (ICBC) first northwest office to King County. ICBC’s Seattle office is the first network expansion following the company’s acquisition of the former Bank of East Asia (USA).
The Seattle office will leverage the strong network and immense capital of ICBC to provide high quality financial services to both local clients and multinational enterprises doing business in the Seattle-King County region and beyond. ICBC’s Seattle office will serve to connect customers in the Pacific Northwest with the company’s worldwide platform in areas such as real estate loans, commercial and industrial loans, cash management, trade finance, commercial paper and cross border financing business.
“Washington State is a hub of international trade and investment and ICBC’s presence in Seattle will only strengthen our presence in the global marketplace,” said Washington State Governor Jay Inslee. “We’re proud to have such a strong global brand like ICBC choose Washington for their new location.”
ICBC held its grand opening ceremony Monday evening, September 21, at Benaroya Hall. Dignitaries at the opening ceremony included: Jiang Jianqing, Chairman of ICBC; Hon. Ed Murray, Mayor of Seattle; Hon. Dow Constantine, King County Executive; Brian Bonlender, Director of the Washington State Department of Commerce; and the heads of several major corporations from the US and China, in addition to many regional and community leaders.
“ICBC’s entrance into the Seattle market is a welcome sign of the strength of our regional economy,” said King County Executive Dow Constantine. “Not only is King County a great place for businesses to start up and grow, it’s also a great place for global businesses, like ICBC, to expand and develop long-term strategic partnerships.”
ICBC is the largest bank in the world, by total assets, and has a presence on six continents and in more than 40 countries and regions. The bank first established its presence in the United States in 2008 with its New York Branch. Since then, it has grown to include four institutions and 13 branches across the East and West coasts of the United States to serve the growth of cross border investment and trade between China and the U.S. In 2015, it took control of Standard Bank’s stake and obtained a license for commodity trading in the U.S.
“Seattle has deep cultural and economic ties with China, and ICBC’s decision to open an office in our community is a symbol of that strong bond,” said Seattle Mayor Ed Murray. “Global businesses want to invest in Seattle’s innovative and dynamic economy, and attracting foreign direct investment is a priority. ICBC’s presence in Seattle will also benefit Seattle businesses looking to expand into the Chinese market, helping to strengthen our economy and grow jobs here at home.”
In his speech at the grand opening ceremony, Mr. Jiang Jianqing, Chairman of ICBC, spoke about the vision of the diverse organizations of ICBC becoming a grand platform in the future. With the model of “one platform, several pillars,” ICBC will make all of its offshore organizations pillars of its global strategy. The Seattle office is a significant milestone in these efforts.
“We welcome ICBC to Washington State! This is a significant milestone that demonstrates our progress as a major center for financial interactions between the U.S. and China,” said Brian Bonlender, Director of the Washington State Department of Commerce. “ICBC’s presence here will only strengthen our international business development efforts on behalf of companies large and small throughout the state.”
The EDC has been providing strategic guidance since February 2015. The EDC provided ICBC with customized research on King County covering a variety of subjects from economic statistics to real estate and demographic data. Additionally, in partnership with the Washington State China Relations Council and Trade Development Alliance of Greater Seattle, the EDC facilitated a business roundtable briefing and other networking opportunities to the ICBC site location team. “The EDC’s work connecting us to business leaders and potential strategic partners was critical in moving our decision forward,” said Michael Lai, ICBC’s Executive Vice President and Head of Market – Northern California Region. “This team has helped us every step of the way and played a key role in our entry into the market, which we know is full of opportunities.” said Lai.
“We’re excited to have ICBC, the largest bank in the world, open an office here in Seattle and further strengthen the financial services industry in King County,” said Suzanne Dale Estey, President & CEO of the EDC. “The EDC has been working with ICBC all year and we are thrilled for this big win for the region. The services ICBC will provide to their customers will be of great value to King County companies that are looking to ‘go global’ and grow by accessing new international markets.”
About the Economic Development Council Seattle & King County
For 44 years, the EDC has provided confidential, free-of-charge, information and assistance to individual business clients, entrepreneurs, site selection decision makers and consultants working with companies. We tailor our advisory services to each client because every company’s objectives and requirements are unique. The EDC’s unique value flows from our cluster-driven, client-focused approach to business development and ability to accelerate success by connecting businesses with our private and public partners and the variety of essential economic resources they provide. For more information, visit us online at http://edc-seaking.org/.
About Industrial and Commercial Bank of China
Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Limited (ICBC), listed on both SSE and SEHK, is the largest bank in the world by total assets [SNL data, as of 2014]. It has its presence in six continents, and its overseas network has expanded to more than 40 countries and regions. For several times, ICBC was ranked in the first place of the largest public enterprise in the world among the Global 2000 listed by the US magazine Forbes.
The Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (USA) NA (ICBC USA or the Bank) is the U.S. subsidiary of ICBC with ICBC as the Controlling Shareholder owning 80% shares, East Asia Holding Company, Inc. owning the other 20%. ICBC USA is a national bank chartered by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency.
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