04 Feb, 2021

Apollo Bank is getting a new president — but Eddy Arriola is staying on as CEO

BY ROB WILE

FEBRUARY 04, 2021 07:00 AM

Less than a year after withdrawing from the largest merger between a bank and credit union in U.S. history, Miami’s Apollo Bank is turning a corner.

This week, the bank announced longtime Miami finance executive Ramon Rodriguez will be named its new president — the company’s first since 2017.

Apollo founder, chairman and CEO Eddy Arriola’s titles are not changing. In an interview, Arriola said the bank found itself at a stage where it had to “either load up and enhance our management team and technology team, or consider other options.”

“In order to compete and be the best community bank in the state of Florida, we had to make a big decision,” Arriola said. “This opportunity presented itself, and we convinced Ramon to join.”

Rodriguez previously served as executive vice president, director of commercial banking and treasury management at City National Bank. He will lead Apollo’s growth moving forward; it currently has $850 million in assets.

“A lot of banks talk the talk, but they really do deliver on how happy clients are with them,” Rodriguez said. “They really know how to provide best in class service, and it was the right time because the bank is positioned perfectly for growth. That’s all I’ve ever done: help banks grow and take to next level.”

In December 2019, Apollo announced it would merge with Tampa-based Suncoast Credit Union — but in May, the two institutions mutually agreed to withdraw the proposed transaction, citing complications and delays stemming from the COVID-19 epidemic.

Apollo is also investing in beefing up its mobile banking services, including the launch of an updated app.

Even in a world now dominated by banking giants and digital technology, community banks like Apollo still have a role to play, Arriola said.

“The end customer still values that direct relationship and knowing their banker,” he said. “While our market continues to grow, banks offering these types of service-oriented banking products — there’s just less and less of them. That’s the void we’re trying to fill.”

Article Link:

https://www.miamiherald.com/news/business/article248984460.html

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