For the first time, Mellon Bank Corp. is extending its private banking services through another bank.
The California private-banking unit of Pittsburgh-based Mellon has struck a deal to offer personal investment services to wealthy clients of Golden Gate Bank, San Francisco.
The unit, Mellon Private Asset Management, has $39 billion under management and administration nationwide. It worked out the arrangement with $68 million-asset Golden Gate in September.
James R. Woolwine, president of Golden Gate, explained that it aligned with Mellon to meet client demand for trust and asset management. Although Golden Gate focuses on the affluent individual market in deposit and lending services, it does not have a trust charter.
Golden Gate Bank was established in 1976 as Western Women's Bank.
The Doris Duke estate saga has taken a few more twists recently.
Chemical Bank and Bank of New York have joined an effort by the late tobacco heiress' physician, Harry B. Demopolous, to have Ms. Duke's April 5, 1993, will invalidated.
The 1993 will names U.S. Trust Co. and Ms. Duke's former butler, Bernard Lafferty, as co-executors. Chemical, Bank of New York, and Dr. Demopolous had been named co-executors in a previous will drawn up in 1991.
On Monday, Judge Eve M. Preminger of the New York County Surrogate's Court said Dr. Demopoulos would be permitted to file objections to the 1993 will. Chemical joined in Dr. Demopoulos' motion, and Bank of New York submitted an affidavit in support of it. Bank of New York also reserved the right to move on its own behalf.
Meanwhile, a defamation suit leveled against U.S. Trust and Mr. Lafferty has resurfaced on appeal before the New York State Appelate Division.
Three of Ms. Duke's former domestic servants, claiming that attorneys representing the co-executors made statements to the press with defamatory intent, are seeking damages of $130 million.
In August, the suit was dismissed by New York Supreme Court Justice Beatrice Shainswit. She sanctioned the plaintiffs' attorney, Raymond Dowd, and fined him and his clients $1,000 for filing what she ruled a frivolous suit.
Comerica Bank, Detroit, has become the first U.S. bank to receive a trust company license in Bermuda - but it will take 12 to 18 months before the operations get off the ground.
The unit is expected to provide services such as standby letters of credit to captive insurance companies and offshore mutual funds, the bank said. It also wants to develop offshore relationships for treasury, cash and asset management.
Douglas A. Ransdell, senior vice president for Comerica's international finance department, said the bank was still sizing up the market for these services. Mr. Ransdell has been named president of the new unit, Comerica Trust Co. of Bermuda Ltd.
About 1,300 captive insurance companies and 500 to 600 offshore mutual funds are said to be registered in Bermuda.
Comerica Bank said it received approval for the trust license Sept. 11 from the Bermuda Monetary Authority. Prior to 1991, banks with less than 60% Bermudian ownership could not receive such licenses, but eight foreign banks have been licensed since the passage ofBermuda's Trust Company Act, the monetary authority said.