Message from the Chairman
Dear Shareholders, Clients and … Future Clients,
As I write this, Coronavirus Covid-19 is a global pandemic, dramatically reminding us how inter-connected we all are. Please be careful and stay safe. We hope this frightening time will soon be under control with our lives back to normal … recognizing there will be a ‘new normal’.
I am confident we will rebound. US economic foundations are strong. And the banking system is much healthier today than it was at the onset of the Great Recession as banks are better capitalized. With that in mind, let’s talk business. “Banking is banking” some say. Well, they haven’t experienced Lakeside. Our Personal Service makes us different from any other financial institution. And in that coming ‘new normal’, personal service will be more unique, and more important, than ever.
2019 financial results follow; our 53rd year was strong. Key indicators:
Net core earnings of $32.3 million represents a 1.84 return on average assets and a 15.70 return on equity. 2019 ended with our total assets at $1.867 billion, up 11.23% from year-ago. This includes $1.545 billion in total loans. Stockholder equity grew from $202.6 million to $210.1 million. Our capital ratios remain significantly above regulatory ‘well capitalized’ levels.
Our Treasury Management Department continues to evolve. Examples include:
- In 2019 we introduced the new Corporate Cash Management (“CCM”) online banking platform, a more robust and intuitive experience for our middle market and large corporate customers.
- We also strengthened fraud preventative services, introducing a new Payee Positive Pay platform, enhancing client ability to avoid check fraud.
- In 2020, a new Foreign Exchange platform for commercial clients is planned. This will allow real time access to foreign currency exchange rates and international payments. We’ll also be updating our Remote Deposit Capture and ACH services.
I’m also very proud of Mortgage Department growth. 2019 was a record year; we recorded more loans and more revenue than any year in our history. In a competitive market, Personal Service … wins.
Integrated Marketing programs grew dramatically in their fourth year. Our Annual Tracking Study confirmed Lakeside brand and advertising awareness surged across target groups. As did our ratings on key banking attributes. We outperform far larger banks, who have far larger marketing budgets.
The Lakeside “Lisa & Phil” radio campaign remained the core of our advertising. Secondary media was tied to each single-minded radio commercial to create product and service “focus periods”. That’s one way we effectively stretch our dollars.
Lakesiders are heavily involved in Community Activities, volunteering for more than 70 charities. We also work with many neighborhood business associations. Our neighbors know us!
Lastly, our Educational programs are all in their third or fourth years: The Lakeside Bank, “Women 1st, Now We’re Cooking! Student Chef competition had over 200 attendees. We awarded $10,000 in Lakeside Scholarships to aspiring female chefs from the Washburne Culinary Institute.
Our elementary school financial education program, “Kids Count!” continued in half a dozen schools.
And our “Write On!” Creative Writing Challenge, awarded multiple $2,500 Lakeside College Scholarships to graduating Chicago Public High School seniors with financial need.
Lakeside’s past is one of innovation and dedication to our colleagues, clients and communities. Our future will be, too.
On behalf of the Board of Directors, thank you Lakesiders and clients. And to all our future clients, we look forward to demonstrating the many values of a Lakeside Bank personal relationship.
Philip D. Cacciatore
Chairman & Chief Executive Officer