First Republic Bank offers private banking, wealth management, trust, and brokerage services for businesses and high-net-worth clients though about 60 branches. Its main geographic focus is on urban markets including San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Boston, Portland, and San Diego. The bank's lending focuses on commercial and residential real estate and personal loans, including vacation home mortgages and aircraft and yacht financing. Trust services are offered through the bank's First Republic Trust Company division.
An investor group led by First Republic's management team bought the bank from Bank of America in 2010; it went public later that year. First Republic raised some $280 million from its stock offering. It plans to use proceeds to fund its lending activities and to make investments. The bank was previously publicly traded before it was acquired by Merrill Lynch for some $1.8 billion in 2007. Bank of America assumed ownership of First Republic as part of its 2009 acquisition of Merrill Lynch.
A conservative lender, First Republic has been relatively unscathed by the financial problems plaguing the banking industry. The company has a solid asset portfolio with few delinquencies.
First Republic is focused on growing its business banking and wealth management business, which spurs fee income. The bank is expanding its wealth management unit through hiring and cross-selling.
In 2011 First Republic expanded its service capabilities by adding bankers with experience in the entertainment industry. The bank now caters to film and television companies by offering lending, deposit, and wealth management services. – less