PITTSFIELD, MA – April 28, 2015 – Berkshire Bank, America’s Most Exciting Bank®, has been named the Small Business Lender of the Quarter by the United States Small Business Administration (SBA) for the first quarter of the fiscal year 2015. This recognition comes on the heels of Berkshire being named “Western Massachusetts Lender of the Year by Volume” for fiscal year 2014.
The award was presented to Berkshire Bank for their excellent SBA activity for the quarter by executives from the U.S. Small Business Administration on April 21, 2015. The event welcomed Hampden Bank business customers to Berkshire Bank as part of the bank’s acquisition. During the SBA’s first quarter—October 1, 2014 to December 31, 2014—Berkshire had twenty-two SBA loan approvals in Massachusetts, tying them as the third most active lender, out of eighty-four lenders. During fiscal year 2014, Berkshire had twenty-six 7 (a) loan approvals for small businesses in the Pioneer Valley and Berkshire County, Massachusetts totaling $2.139 million. Also, Berkshire was ranked #13 by the SBA across the entire Commonwealth of Massachusetts in its 7(a) Loan Guaranty Program in 2014.
“Congratulations to the entire Berkshire Bank team for being named our Small Business Lender of the First Quarter,” said Robert Nelson, Massachusetts SBA District Director. “Our continued economic expansion is dependent on lenders such as Berkshire Bank supporting the small business community—which is why we are so very happy to applaud the bank on this recognition.”
Berkshire Bank is a preferred Small Business Administration (SBA) lender and is a participant in the Massachusetts Treasurer's Office Small Business Partnership Program, offering a full suite of financial services for small businesses. Berkshire’s Small Business division is dedicated to helping business customers grow their companies, and the surrounding communities succeed. Berkshire has a team of dedicated small business banking professionals located in every region throughout its footprint trained to help customers find the best combination of services to make their businesses succeed—today and in the future.
Berkshire Bank Foundation supports Common Capital’s Business Lending Program
As part of the event, the SBA joined Berkshire Bank and their Foundation to award a two year grant to Common Capital, Inc. totaling $15,000. This grant will be used to support their Business Lending Program which provides services to small and emerging businesses located in western Massachusetts. Through this program, Common Capital assesses a business's needs, bringing together the appropriate financial and technical resources that may not otherwise be available to ensure success.
Common Capital, Inc. is a private, nonprofit community development financial Institution working to strengthen communities by creating economic opportunities for low- and moderate-income people in western and central Massachusetts. Common Capital provides affordable financing complemented with training and business assistance to small businesses throughout the area. They ensure business viability, thereby maximizing the ability of those businesses to succeed and contribute to the strength of the local economy.
About Berkshire Bank
Berkshire Hills Bancorp (NYSE: BHLB) is the parent of Berkshire Bank, America’s Most Exciting Bank®. The Company, recognized for its entrepreneurial approach and distinctive culture, has more than $7.2 billion in assets and 96 full service branch offices in Massachusetts, New York, Connecticut, and Vermont providing personal and business banking, insurance, and wealth management services. In 2014, Berkshire Bank was named one of Massachusetts Most Charitable Companies by the Boston Business Journal. To learn more, visit www.berkshirebank.com or call 800-773-5601. Berkshire Bank is the official bank of the Boston Bruins coverage on NESN.