When Uri Levin, the newly installed President & Chief Executive Officer of Israel Discount Bank New York (IDB Bank or IDB), describes his financial institution, he can’t suppress a smile. “IDB has such a unique culture of being personal, which is apparent both with our clients and also, internally, with our colleagues. We are large enough to give our clients whatever they need and small enough to offer them real personal service. IDB Bank is a full-service American bank with an Israeli soul,” he says.
IDB Bank opened a representative office on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan in 1949 and was one of the first international banks to open a branch in New York in 1962 when the law in New York State changed to permit foreign banks to operate in the state. Today, IDB is a full-service commercial bank licensed by the State of New York and a member of the FDIC.
IDB provides domestic and international, personal and commercial banking services to its clientele in the United States, Israel, and elsewhere throughout the world. IDB Bank is ranked among the top 25 largest commercial banks in the New York area according to Crain’s New York Business. The Bank’s parent company, Discount Bank Ltd. is one of the three largest commercial banks in Israel and one of the 300 largest banks in the world.
Mr. Levin, 44, who assumed his new position this month, comes to the New York bank after years of experience in the financial industry in Israel and other markets around the globe. After serving at various high-level management positions with Bank Hapoalim, including Executive Vice President in charge of corporate marketing, business development and strategy, he managed a global financial services group as CEO at ISP Group in Israel and Switzerland. In 2014, he joined Discount Bank Ltd. in Israel, serving as CFO, Head of Planning, Strategy, and Financing. His education and distinguished background has helped Mr. Levin prepare for his many leadership roles including this one. A graduate of the Israeli Air-Force Aviation Academy, he went on to study engineering and computer science at Tel Aviv University before earning his MBA at the London Business School.
Personal Service Pledge
“‘It’s personal’ is not just a slogan for us. It’s a way of living and a way of conducting our business. It’s what makes this bank so special. In short, we succeed because of our trusted relationships with our clients, often over two and three generations. When our clients call the Bank they ask for their personal bankers by name,” he says, adding that it is not unusual for IDB bankers to attend events with their clients, especially within the Jewish community. “Our relationships with our clients are warm, positive, and emotional, and we intend to further and deepen these ties. We’re not interested in developing a long list of clients with whom we maintain thin relations. We intend to build relationships that last,” he says, adding that the warmth he has personally received from the Jewish community since coming to New York has been “unbelievable.”
While IDB certainly has many non-Jewish clients and relationships, the Bank’s connection to Israel makes it special to the American-Jewish community. “It’s part of our culture to seek a personal connection with the community, and to participate in and contribute to its worthy causes.” he says.
To that end, he is eager to make himself available to speak to Jewish groups on the services offered by IDB Bank and its culture of personal service.
By: Susan L. Rosenbluth, The Jewish Voice And Opinion.com