This might not seem like the most opportune time to open a de novo. But Kirk Dowdell, the CEO of Golden Pacific Bancorp, isn't planning to open just one bank, he envisions a whole fleet of community banks scattered throughout California. The first bank, Golden Pacific Bank, opens this month in downtown Sacramento.
Dowdell is certainly going against the grain, particularly in California. According to the California Department of Financial Institutions, in 2008 there have been five state chartered banks approved for opening, down from 18 in 2007.