On 21 September 2015 (US time), Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) announced in Seattle that its local institution, also the first operating institution from a Mainland China bank in the Northwest America, has officially opened for business.
On the inaugural ceremony, Chairman Jiang Jianqing of ICBC said, the Seattle institution, as a new business platform of the Bank in the U.S., will provide local customers, as well as multinationals and financial institutions that participate in the economic and trade activities between the two countries, with excellent financial services on the strengths of ICBC in funding, network and technology. In the future, ICBC institutions in the U.S. will implement its “broad platform” programme and build an organic, integrated and comprehensive financial service platform leveraging its “one platform + multi-pillars” model.
Under the jurisdiction of the Washington State, Greater Seattle is the birthplace of a handful of companies, e.g. Boeing, Microsoft, Amazon and Starbucks. This area is also of overriding importance in China’s investment in the U.S. In 2014, Chinese enterprises made 35 investments totaling almost USD 300 million in the Washington State, a leap forward from six investments worth less than USD 20 million in 2007. Currently, a host of reputable Chinese enterprises including ZTE, Inspur Group, iSoftStone, Hainan Airlines and Alibaba have established their U.S. headquarters in Seattle, creating enormous demand for financial services. Therefore, ICBC (Seattle) has a sound foundation for development.
Over recent years, ICBC has been actively enhancing its capabilities to deploy a network and providing services to meet financial demand from trade and investment activities between China and the U.S. ICBC spent merely seven years from 2008 to expand its presence in the U.S. into a universal-licensed financial institution with four subsidiaries. The expanding scale and the improved operating level have substantially strengthened the U.S. institutions’ capabilities to serve multinationals, local customers and Sino-U.S. economic, trade and investment intercourses. In the coming days, the Seattle institution will become ICBC’s headquarter in the northwest of the U.S. alongside the Bank’s penetration and development in the Washington State and Greater Seattle. The institution is about to offer premier services to local Chinese & American corporate and personal customers.