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Rebirth: The de novo bank class of 2018
De novo activity is slowly picking up steam, ending a lengthy lull that followed the financial crisis. While new charter activity is nowhere near as brisk as it was during the pre-crisis days, at least eight banks are in various stages of formation. In comparison, five new banks opened their doors between 2013 and 2017.

The applications are from markets across the country, including Miami; Nashville, Tenn.; New York and Las Vegas.

This new pack of de novos seeks to raise a combined $280 million, ranging from $20 million for Sterling Bank in Las Vegas to around $100 million for Grasshopper Bank in New York. Many of them are aiming to serve very precise niches, including a focus on New York’s “innovation economy” at Grasshopper and a plan at Marathon International Bank to focus on Washington’s growing Ethiopian-American community.

While there is no guarantee that these groups will get approval and open this year, it is certainly an encouraging sign for many in the industry to see attempts being made. Here is a closer look at the 2018 class, which includes two banks that recently opened and six others that have filed applications.