Merchants Financial Group, Inc. (MFGI), showed an increase of 18.6% in net income in 2008 over 2007, it was reported at the MFGI Annual Shareholders’ meeting, held Thursday, April 2 at Merchants Bank in downtown Winona.
Net income was at $5.61 million in 2008, up from $4.73 million in 2007. Total assets at the end of 2008 were at $938 million, up from $920 million at the end of 2007. Total deposits for 2008 grew to $730.7 million, up from $700.9 million in 2007. Earnings per share was at $2.13 in 2008 as opposed to $1.78 for 2007.
“We are safe, sound, secure and growing,” said Merchants Financial Group President and Chief Executive Officer Richard L. Mahoney. “In this environment, our conservative approach has paid dividends for our shareholders and customers. We are proud to serve the individuals and businesses in communities throughout the area.” The theme for the event was “Living Our Values.” Joining Mahoney in addressing the shareholders were MFGI Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Mike Speltz, Merchants Bank-St. Charles President Jim Allen and Rick Lommen Jr., owner/operator and president of Courtesy Corporation (McDonald’s) and a member of the MFGI Board.
“Our employees are a major reason for our success. They live their personal values and our corporate values each and every day. That’s one reason we stand out when compared to other banks,” Mahoney said.
Also at Thursday’s meeting, shareholders re-elected four existing members to the Merchants Financial Group Board of Directors: Mahoney, Michael F. Cichanowski, Timothy A. Murphy and Richard J. Pope.
MFGI is based in Winona and is the corporate entity that owns Merchants Bank locations in Winona, St. Charles, Rochester, Caledonia, La Crescent, Onalaska, Cannon Falls, Red Wing and the southern Twin Cities metropolitan suburbs of Hampton, Apple Valley, Cottage Grove, Hastings and Lakeville. The “flagship” Merchants Bank in Winona was founded in 1875. The Company also owns Winona County Abstract and Merchants Capital Resources, a leasing company based in Edina. Additionally, the company recently announced that it has agreed to purchase the deposits and location of another bank in Cottage Grove, pending regulatory approval.
The ownership of Merchants Financial Group is made up of its employees and approximately 450 shareholders, mostly individuals and families from southeastern Minnesota and west-central Wisconsin.