Like many former Irving Trust Co. executives, David M. Mace disappeared from bankers' radar screens after Irving was taken over by the Bank of New York in 1988.
But Mr. Mace has found it pays to keep up old relationships.
Working with a network of former Irving customers and colleagues, he has resurfaced as chairman of Intercredit Bank, a small, fast-growing institution based in Miami that specializes in trade finance and private banking. Intercredit is owned by Ecuador's Noboa family.
"Noboa was a customer of Irving for 40 years, business with Latin America was growing fast, and we decided the time was right to set up a bank," Mr. Mace said. "Everything that's happened since has confirmed that."
Instead of setting up a new company, last April the Noboa family bought a Hispanic community bank in Miami and named Mr. Mace chairman.
Since them, Intercredit's assets have spurted from $13 million to over $38 million, and they're still rising.
The bank has also applied to join the Swift international payment network and plans to open new headquarters in January alongside other major banks on Brickell Avenue in downtown Miami.
"We saw big U.S. banks disappearing from Miami and felt there was room for a smaller and more focused bank," said Mr. Mace. "It's very much the same classical trade-finance business Irving did - letters of credit, acceptances, and collections."
|I Couldn't Just Walk Out the Door'
Mr. Mace did not take the ample severance package that Bank of New York offered Irving employees; instead, he remained at the bank for about a year after it was acquired.
"I felt it was my responsibility to look after the people who were going to get left behind," he said. "I felt I couldn't just shake hands, tell everyone to call me if they were in town, and walk out the door."
His strong sense of loyalty appears to have paid off.
Three former colleagues from Irving - Carlos A. Menendez, Rene R. Maresma, and Jose R. Parrondo - have joined Mr. Mace at Intercredit, providing the bank a ready-made management team of veteran bankers.
New Home for Old Colleagues
In all, he estimated, nearly 20 former Irving employees have joined the Noboa Group, a diversified shipping, commodities, financial, and industrial firm based in Guayaquil, Ecuador.
Born in Springfield, Mass., the 54-year-old banker graduated from Amherst College and went on to earn a law degree at the University of Virginia.
After a brief stint with the firm of Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft, he joined Irving Trust in 1966 as resident counsel.
He later moved through several positions at the bank, rising to executive vice president for worldwide banking in 1981.