JPMorgan Chase unveils statewide Florida expansion plan in Miami-only press event
JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon visited Miami last Thursday and announced expansion plans in Florida, including the addition of about 600 new employees in the state and opening 20 to 30 branches a year starting in 2011. (Photo: AP.)
Dimon held a Miami press conference to explain his plan yet the bank chose not to issue any press release outlining the New York money center bank's strategy for the rest of the Sunshine State. Come on, JPMorgan Chase, if you're going to unveil a statewide initiative, then make a statewide announcement. Florida does not revolve around Miami, as much as a New York banking company might think so.
Chase re-established a consumer banking presence in Florida through its September 2008 acquisition of failed Washington Mutual. Chase similarly landed in the Tampa Bay market in 1986 by buying the banking franchise of the failed Park Bank of St. Petersburg. Chase's retail banking commitment then was half-hearted and the bank eventually closed most of its offices. But now it's thinking expansion in Florida again.
According to the Miami Herald, JPMorgan Chase expects about 250 of the 600 new jobs to be in South Florida, which suggests Tampa Bay could be looking at at least 100 of the remaining 350 positions, though this is speculation based on metro market size. An Orlando Sentinel story describes the job numbers as "about 200 new jobs from Orlando to Tampa" -- whatever that means. The bank currently has about 14,000 employees in the state. Here's the complete Miami Herald story. And here's a bit more insight here from the Jacksonville Business Journal.
-- Robert Trigaux, Times Business Columnist