By BECKY GILLETTE
GULFPORT — When Hancock Bank and Whitney Bank merged in 2011, they kept their respective names due to each being so large and well known in their respective markets for nearly 100 years. But now the banks are merging in name, as well. The banks will be renamed Hancock Whitney Bank on May 25. The bank announced a new Hancock Whitney logo and brand today that executives said builds on the 100-year banking relationship between the two banks.
“Hancock Bank and Whitney Bank came together as one organization in 2011, but the story really began 100 years earlier,” said President and CEO John M. Hairston, who heads the largest bank in Mississippi with assets of about $27 billion. “Our new brand celebrates the history and enduring relationship between our two banks. It also affirms our passionate commitment to helping people achieve their financial goals and dreams. More than 4,000 associates a carry on that mission every day.”
The names are being changed on May 25—100 years after the first transaction between Hancock Bank and Whitney Bank, which occurred May 25, 1918.
Chief Operating Office Shane Loper said the name and logo change honor the legacy of Hancock and Whitney Banks.
“That is exactly why you have Hancock and Whitney represented in the name of the bank because you have two 100-year plus legacies that are being valued,” Loper said. “Those are the names of banks that have built lots of businesses and helped people achieve hopes and dreams over the past 100 years. We have been marching in this direction since the banks merged in 2011. This is just the next logical step. It is going to be a lot simpler for customers. We think the new logo is timeless honoring the history of both companies but portrays a contemporary approach that we want to have as we go forward.”
Loper said their five core values are honor and integrity, strength and stability, commitment to service, teamwork, and personal responsibility to keep the bank strong and depositors safe. Loper said the new brand incorporates those core values as the foundation of everything they do to create opportunities for people and the communities they serve.
Chief Marketing Officer Dan Marks said the name and logo change were a natural evolution.
“We did a lot of research with clients and the new logo and brand were received very favorably,” Marks said. “They felt it was just a natural step, building on heritage, building on the history and building on timeless values. The logo change simplifies things across our whole operation. The name ‘Hancock Whitney’ unifies two century-old brands with tremendous respect and equity. The primary badge-like logo symbolizes our longstanding commitment to communities and clients. The center emblem incorporates a stylized ‘HW’ of five shapes representing our five core values. The top-right arrow points to an optimistic spirit and the potential of our strong future together with clients, which is inherent in our mission.”
Marks said perhaps most significant is the tagline tied to their brand: “Your Dream. Our Mission.”
“Every day, our associates deliver five-star service to help people achieve their financial goals and dreams,” Marks said. “Earning our clients’ confidence by honoring our founding promise is why we can stay strong and grow together with the people, businesses, and communities we serve.”
Officials said signs with the new logo will start going up today at Hancock Whitney headquarters, regional offices, 200-plus financial centers, and more than 260 ATMs. In the next 60 days, clients will see brand updates to online and mobile banking, debit and credit cards, and checks. They can still use their same accounts and card numbers under the same terms and bank with their same local bankers.
Hancock traditionally had its largest number of branches and customers in Mississippi, while Whitney Bank was headquartered in Louisiana. Currently the combined bank’s predominant footprint is the Gulf South from Tampa, Fl., to Houston, Texas. They also have a healthcare banking office based in Nashville that serves the entire company.
Marks said the name change reinforces their footprint across the entire operation. “Business owners will benefit if they have offices in multiple locations,” he said.
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