“We have been put in the same bucket with all the institutions that have failed, these companies that are being bailed out,” said Ray Davis, Umpqua CEO and chairman. “I’ve gotten calls from shareholders and customers (who say) ‘You dirty dog, you shouldn’t have done this.’”
Davis takes pains to point out that Umpqua doesn’t need bailing out (it’s profitable and well-capitalized). The Treasury distributed some of the bailout money to healthy banks to jump-start lending, and Umpqua is required to repay the loan. It also has to pay a 5 percent annual dividend.
Nevertheless, Davis finds himself and his bank lumped in with the AIGs and Citigroups of the world, whose reckless bets on exotic financial instruments pushed them to the edge of insolvency.
Umpqua is an institution we’ve covered before on AdPulp. The community bank brings a fresh approach to their marketing and overall customer experience, which is a nice compliment to the values obviously found in the executive suite and embodied throughout the organization.