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Herrmann Brings Bank up to Lending Speed

In two decades in the financial industry, Rob Herrmann has worked at banks big and small. Two months ago, Herrmann landed on Rowayton Avenue as chief lending officer for Darien Rowayton Bank , an institution that definitely and deliberately finds itself on the smaller side of the banking spectrum. And in Hermann's view, that's a good thing.

"I don't know of many banks where you can meet the president and CEO, and have them come out and discuss a potential financing," says Herrmann. "Our biggest asset is personal service and attention, something you might not get at a big commercial bank."

That ability to establish one-on-one contact with customers allows Darien Rowayton Bank to make decisions in a quicker and timely manner. "We're looking to make good loans, with the goal of growing the bank, while staying in our marketplace," Herrmann says.

To that end, Herrmann has worked on several deals establishing lines of credit with small businesses that he feels should do well as the economy continues its recovery in 2011. "I think a lot of companies turned the corner last year," he says. "The bleeding has stopped, and they've started to see some profits."

Herrmann says that economic rebound should benefit the banking industry as well and thaw the lending freeze that has gripped the nation in the recession. "I think there were some banks that were staying on the sidelines a year ago," he says. "I think, at least in this area, we're seeing some easing in the credit crunch."

Herrmann thinks Darien Rowayton Bank is ahead of the curve and, coupled with the personalized service it offers, can be a strong player in the local financial industry. "Our position is strong, and we're hoping it continues," he says.

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