First Vietnamese-American community bank in the U.S. is expanding into the SGV

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    First Vietnamese-American community bank in the U.S. is expanding into the SGV

    California International Bank, NA, the nation’s first federally chartered Vietnamese-American community bank, has expanded into the San Gabriel Valley.

    The company, which has operated a location in Westminster since 2005, moved its corporate headquarters to 8632 E. Valley Blvd. in Rosemead. A new bank branch has also been opened there. The 6,200-square-foot duel operation opened Monday.

    “We’re excited about the move,” CEO Benjamin J. Lin said Friday. “This will allow us to connect and expand with a bigger customer base and we’ll have more opportunities to partner with other banks.”

    California International’s Westminster location opened in 2005 as Saigon National Bank. The bank switched to its new name late last year to reflect its goal of serving a larger segment of the local Asian-American community.

    Lin said California International will be issuing a lot of commercial loans.

    “We are looking for small businesses that want real estate construction loans,” he said. “We also offer small business loans that are guaranteed by the Small Business Administration and we offer capital working loans. Our portfolio is mostly made up of commercial real estate loans.”

  • This started in Westminster? Not surprised. I’ve been there and there’s a HUGE Vietnamese-American population, I believe the biggest in the entire country. What I am surprised about is that there’s an actual bank dedicated to specifically Vietnamese-Americans. I didn’t know we were big enough of a population for a bank to be started just for us :laughing: But that’s cool to know that there is.

    Another thing I’m surprised about is how the CEO of the bank is Chinese-American even though his bank is mainly for Vietnamese-Americans :laughing: Not that it matters (at least he’s Asian) but I’m wondering if the reason why he didn’t start a bank for his own ethnicity instead is because there are already a lot of banks dedicated to Chinese-Americans so he wanted to find an opportunity with less competition?

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