Bank of the West in San Francisco is entering the Chicago area by opening a commercial banking office.

John C. Thurston is heading the new office, the company said in a Tuesday press release. The office provides lending, capital markets, Treasury management and trade financing services to middle-market companies in the Midwest with at least $25 million in annual revenues. This is the 19th national banking office in the U.S. for Bank of the West, a subsidiary of France’s BNP Paribas.

Thurston has 18 years of experience in commercial banking, primarily with middle-market companies in Illinois and the Midwest. Prior to joining Bank of the West, he was a managing director of The Private Bank and Trust Co. in Chicago.

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