7 Mar 2013

New bank planned for American Samoa

4:11 pm on 7 March 2013

The Community Bank of Amerika Samoa will be filing this month a formal application with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation to open an American Samoa-owned bank.

If necessary funds can be raised and federal approval is received, the new bank should be opened in about a year.

An update on the bank from the founding group, which includes businessmen Avamua Dave Haleck, Lewis Wolman and lawyer Marshal Ashley, was made during a press conference to introduce the bank's CEO designee, Gary Ayre.

Mr Ayre, a former CEO for ANZ Amerika Samoa Bank, says the new bank needs to raise in excess of 10 million US dollars in equity capital in order to meet the requirements.

He says they are excited the bank will be a locally owned and run organisation.

"I think when you got an American Samoa run organisation that has a better feel for what the territory actually needs, what economic conditions prevail and how to manage those within in the confines of the territory, you got a better recipe for sucess."

Gary Ayre says they have raised close to five million dollars so far.