Fueling the community’s economy, one small business at a time | SteamboatToday.com

Fueling the community’s economy, one small business at a time

Yampa Valley Bank has funded nearly $40 million to 564 local businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic

By Lauren Glendenning
Brought to you by Yampa Valley Bank
About Yampa Valley Bank

As the only locally owned bank in Moffat County and Routt County, Yampa Valley Bank believes it has a responsibility to support local communities. As our nation, state, and communities continue to be impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic, Yampa Valley Bank remains focused on how it can best fulfill its duties as a community bank. For more information, visit YVB’s website at http://www.yampavalleybank.com.

When the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic reached the Steamboat economy, Yampa Valley Bank stepped in to do what it does best: support the local businesses that are the heart and soul of our community.    

The bank’s loan department worked tirelessly to secure loans for customers seeking assistance from the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program, which the federal government passed in April. While PPP was the result of a national crisis, it was also the kind of work they were already accustomed to as a community-focused bank.

“As relationship bankers and dedicated members of the Steamboat Springs community, we do everything we can to protect the vibrancy of our small businesses,” said PJ Wharton, President and CEO at Yampa Valley Bank, “which serve as the economic engines of our local economy.”

‘The hometown bank’

The Steamboat Springs community has ranked Yampa Valley Bank as Best Bank of the ‘Boat for 8 years running.

By prioritizing the needs of those who live, work, play and raise families here, Yampa Valley Bank is serving friends and neighbors as well as customers. The bank also gets to see its economic impact remain right here in the community.

“As the hometown bank, we believe we have a responsibility to support our communities,” Wharton said. “Yampa Valley Bank is proud of our ability to serve the Steamboat Springs community in a way that the large banks cannot.”

That’s because every dollar that comes into Yampa Valley Bank remains right here in the valley. The bank also works hard to understand every customer’s unique financial situation.

Independent Community Bankers of America President and CEO, Rebeca Romero Rainey, said community banks provide more than half of the nation’s small business loans, and by prioritizing the needs of their local customers, they can quickly adapt and respond during times of crisis.

The faces behind the numbers

In total, Yampa Valley Bank funded $39.7 million to 564 local businesses. The average Yampa Valley Bank PPP Loan was $70,000.

The bank’s adaptability and personalized service helped Yampa Valley Bank’s customers weather the storm with a little less stress. Chris Gander, of Moe’s Original BBQ, said Yampa Valley Bank helped him keep his staff employed and eliminated pandemic-associated panic.

Justin Keys, owner of The Barley, agreed that the loan funded by the bank allowed him to bring his team back on staff and receiving paychecks.

“In a world of so much stress, it was nice to not have to worry about the team,” he said.

The bank was also able to donate $53,000 in April to LiftUp of Routt County and the Inter-Faith Food Bank of Moffat County thanks to a purchase-match program in partnership with local restaurants.

“We encouraged people to eat out and support the restaurants we know and love in the community, and that money was matched by the bank to raise donations to the local food banks,” Chrissy Kunkel, Marketing Administrator at Yampa Valley Bank said. “This is another example of the importance of community banking — being able to pull that money from our marketing budget at the last minute and put it toward this campaign for an important cause.”

Nonprofits also benefited from the PPP Loans. Integrated Community Executive Director, Nelly Navarro, said Yampa Valley Bank’s level of commitment and understanding of the community’s needs was impressive.

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