Throughout its history, Wells Fargo has leveraged innovation, from the telegraph to split-second Internet banking. In 1888, Wells Fargo embraced advances in transportation, and was able to proclaim “Ocean to Ocean service”—over 2,000 Express offices connected by nearly 46,000 miles of stagecoach, railroad, and shipping routes.
Wells Fargo encourages developing technologies that make financial services safe, efficient and easy for customers. Helping to drive innovation continues in the present. Wells Fargo Bank is expanding its Silicon Valley-based Technology Banking Division coast‑to‑coast: After opening new offices in Boston and Seattle last year, the division is planning to expand to New York in 2014.
Eric Houser, a 16-year Wells Fargo Commercial Banking veteran based in Silicon Valley, has been named head of the company’s Technology Banking Division, established in 1999. Steve Smith, a 22-year Wells Fargo veteran, is leading the Division’s expansion nationwide. “The rapidly expanding technology sector and the wealth around it are driving the country’s economic growth,” Houser said. “Wells Fargo’s focus is to serve clients from start-up to large corporation.”
For example, Wells Fargo was an early-stage banker for, and maintains a relationship today with Tesla Motors, the Palo Alto, Calif., manufacturer of premium electric vehicles. Wells Fargo has also supported PitchBook, founded in 2007 by John Gabbert. PitchBook has quickly become one of the leading information resources for the venture capital and private equity industries, including Wells Fargo as a customer.
“The Technology Banking Division has been a perfect relationship for us as we’ve rapidly grown our company and our base of clients around the globe,” said Gabbert. “At PitchBook, we are passionate about innovation, technology, reliability and client service, so it is great to work with Wells Fargo who shares these same core values. They know our industry, they know our business, and they consistently exceed our expectations.”
Propelled by growing demand nationwide from a wide range of U.S. technology companies, Wells Fargo Technology Banking Division has formed four Specialty Groups:
- Technology serves companies from inception through commercialization, global expansion, and liquidity. There are subgroups for Start-up Services, Venture Banking, and Middle Market. Key sectors are software, hardware/networking, semiconductor, internet/digital, media/advertising technology.
- CleanTech serves businesses that manufacture, market or develop clean technology products and services.
- Life Sciences serve pharmaceutical, medical device, health care information technology, biotech, and diagnostic industries through all stages of growth: from research and development to product launch, commercialization, and global expansion.
- Venture Fund Services provides financial solutions for venture capital and private equity funds focused on technology industries.
Technology Banking Division offices provide Commercial Banking services to a broad range of technology companies. Initially in Northern California, the Division soon expanded. Today, nine Technology Banking Division offices nationwide support the Specialty Groups in five U.S. regions, including Northern California/Silicon Valley, Southern California, Southwest, and Northwest.
And now, East.