About Us

We are a community-based, full-service commercial bank that emphasizes the banking needs of small to medium-sized businesses, professional entities, governmental agencies and individuals.  We opened in January 2006 under the name Northern State Bank.  We offer a broad range of consumer and commercial banking services to our customers.  We offer high-quality service by providing more direct, personal attention than we believe is offered by competing financial institutions, most of which are branch offices of banks headquartered outside our primary trade area.  We believe that this combination of quick, responsive and personal service, combined with state-of-the-art banking technology, provides our customers with a superior banking experience.  We urge potential investors to read our 2015 Annual Report, and subsequent Shareholder Letters, for a review of our operations, by selecting the investor relations tab on this website.

On July 22, 2010, we entered into a Recapitalization Agreement with Messrs. Abraham Opatut and C. Herbert Schneider, as lead investors of an investor group (the “Investor Group”), under which Messrs. Abraham Opatut and Schneider agreed to assist us in recapitalizing the Bank (the “Recapitalization”). The Recapitalization was consummated on December 14, 2010, and we raised approximately $18.3 million in additional capital.  As part of the Recapitalization, we also relocated our headquarters to 105 River Avenue in Lakewood, while maintaining our original branch in Closter, New Jersey.  We now serve Ocean, Monmouth, and Mercer Counties in New Jersey, as well as our original target market of Bergen County, New Jersey.  We also restructured our Board of Directors, adding 11 new Board Members, while maintaining four members of the Bank’s original Board.  Finally, Mr. Abraham Opatut became Chairman of our Board, and Mr. C. Herbert Schneider became our President and CEO as part of the Recapitalization.

With the Recapitalization in December 2010, Northern State Bank finished the year 2010 with $77.6 million in total assets and $21.6 million in total capital.  Subsequently, the Bank formally changed its name to First Commerce Bank in June, 2011, with additional capital of $7.2 million being raised in January, 2012 and $11.0 million in August, 2013. In the 4th quarter, 2015, there was $2.9 million raised from the exercise of warrants previously granted to the Northern State Bank shareholders as well as the founding directors and founders of First Commerce Bank, in formation. As of June 30, 2016 total assets were $758.4 million and total capital was $63.8 million.

From January, 2011, to May, 2016, First Commerce Bank expanded its physical presence as follows:

Date                                                                Address

April, 2011 Headquarters, 105 River Avenue, Lakewood
April, 2013 Operations Center, 105 River Avenue, Lakewood
May, 2013 Branch, 40 North Main Street, Allentown
October, 2013 Branch, 1008 Teaneck Road, Teaneck
April, 2014 Branch, 44 Engle Street, Englewood
March, 2015 Branch, 118A Schanck Road, Freehold
March, 2015 Branch, 101 Chestnut Ridge Road, Montvale
May, 2016 Branch, 1412 Route 130, Robbinsville

 

We would wish to share with you the financial highlights of First Commerce Bank. 

  Deposits Loans Capital Assets
Date $ In Millions $ In Millions $ In Millions $ In Millions
December 31, 2010 $55.7 $54.7 $21.6 $77.8
December 31, 2011 $131.4 $113.2 $21.8 $154.6
December 31, 2012 $191.7 $191.8 $27.6 $226.0
December 31, 2013 $287.4 $285.0 $41.6 $342.0
December 31, 2014 $448.1 $453.3 $46.5 $511.0
December 31, 2015 $588.5 $610.9 $57.4 $669.2
June 30, 2016 $670.5 $691.0 $63.8 $758.4


Recently, the Bank has received certain performance recognition in the banking community.

  1. The Bank was the fastest growing bank, headquartered in New Jersey, for 2013, 2014 and 2015 with growth being measured organically and on a relative basis.
     
  2. Financial Management Consulting Group (FMCG) in 2015 ranked our Bank as number 4 in overall financial performance for banks headquartered in New Jersey.
     
  3. FMCG ranked our Bank as number 1 in overall financial performance for banks headquartered in New Jersey as of March 31, 2016.
     
  4. SNL, in Charlottesville, Virginia, ranked First Commerce Bank number 13 in the country in overall financial performance in 2014 for banks in asset size between $500.0 million and $5.0 billion.
     
  5. SNL, in Charlottesville, Virginia, ranked First Commerce Bank number 27 in the country in overall financial performance in 2015 for banks with less than $1.0 billion in assets.

First Commerce Bank prides itself on being efficient, responsive, and relationship driven.  The mission is to build the right family of talented staff members in order to achieve the desired results.  First Commerce Bank is not about earnings, which is a short-term objective, as its mission is to build franchise value.