Horicon-based Horicon Bank has leased an office in the Riverwood Corporate Center III in Pewaukee to serve as the home base for its new trust administration offering.
[caption id="attachment_363058" align="alignright" width="110"] Chris Berens[/caption]
The 1,806-square-foot space at N19 W24200 Riverwood Drive has four employees, said Chris Berens, vice president at Horicon Bank, who leads trust administration. Berens was hired on at Horicon in April to launch the division. He previously served as vice president at Fiduciary Partners Inc. in Brookfield, and has worked in the trust business for more than 20 years.
Horicon does not directly manage trust funds, offering just trust administration services to financial advisors as an independent trustee. It also provides trust and estate settlement, financial power of attorney and bill paying services.
“This is a bit unique,” Berens said. “As far as I know, it’s the first community bank in the Midwest that is offering just trust administration services and not managing the assets of the trust. We work directly with the clients. The only thing we don’t do is manage the assets.”
[caption id="attachment_363061" align="alignleft" width="300"] A Horicon Bank branch.[/caption]
The office represents an expansion into southeastern Wisconsin for Horicon, which Berens said is driven by the need for independent trust administration in Milwaukee and Madison. Horicon has 15 Wisconsin branches, located in Appleton, Beaver Dam, Fond Du Lac, Green Lake, Horicon, Iron Ridge, Mayville, Neosho, Oshkosh, Ripon and West Bend.
“We wanted easy access to both the Horicon Bank footprint, but also to the I-94 corridor,” Berens said. “We’ll be very active in the metro Milwaukee and southeastern Wisconsin markets.”
While there are no firm plans to add more of a branch presence in southeastern Wisconsin, Berens said it’s a possibility down the road.
“It’s something we’ve got our eye on for the future, but nothing’s been decided at this point,” he said.
Horicon will offer its trust administration services statewide, and Berens expects it will administer 75 to 100 trusts per administrator on staff.