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May 26, 2023

CT regulator gives OK to Liberty Bank’s first out-of-state branch

Liberty Bank's corporate headquarters in Middletown. HBJ Photo | Joe Cooper Liberty Bank's corporate headquarters in Middletown.

Middletown-based Liberty Bank has received state regulatory approval to open a full-service branch in East Longmeadow, Mass., its first full-service branch outside Connecticut.

Liberty, with more than $7 billion in assets, submitted an application to the Connecticut Department of Banking on March 24, to open a full-service branch at 94 Shaker Road in East Longmeadow, Mass., as part of an expansion strategy focused on the Interstate-91 corridor.

The Connecticut Department of Banking approved the branch on May 17.

Liberty gained a toe-hold in Massachusetts with the establishment of an East Longmeadow commercial loan production office in 2021. That went so well, the bank is moving to open the full-service branch, with a target opening in October.

“The dedicated relationship managers and support teams based in this market have been extremely successful in building relationships within East Longmeadow and Greater Springfield and attracting new customers to the bank,” Minnie Saleh, Liberty’s senior executive vice president and chief retail banking officer told HBJ in March. “The growth we have experienced at this loan production office has been significant and, as a result of the many customers onboarded, we have identified a need to establish a branch to better support our customer’s needs and continued growth.”

Liberty reported $6.94 billion in assets and 730 employees at the close of 2022, according to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.  A Liberty spokesman said the bank's assets currently top $7 billion. 

Most staff at the existing loan production office in East Longmeadow live in western Massachusetts, as will the staff hired for the full-service branch, Saleh noted.

As a Connecticut-chartered bank, Liberty’s application for the East Longmeadow branch required approval by the Connecticut Department of Banking, Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., and the Massachusetts Division of Banks.

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