Spokane Journal of Business

AmericanWest to close two store branches

Bank will retain a third Rosauers outlet, but now prefers ‘brick and mortar’

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AmericanWest Bank, of Spokane, plans within the next three months to close two bank branches located inside Rosauers Supermarkets Inc. stores here in a shift away from such in-store branches.

AmericanWest, formerly known as United Security Bank, will close branches in Rosauers stores in the Five Mile and Lincoln Heights shopping districts, but will keep its third in-store branch at the Rosauers outlet at University City Shopping Center, in the Spokane Valley, says Duane Brandenberg, president of the banks Inland Northwest region.

Weve tried the grocery-store delivery system, and we think the brick-and-mortar branch system is more effective, Brandenberg says. Customers seem to prefer a traditional branch type of environment.

The two branches slated for closure, at 1724 W. Francis in the Rosauers Five Mile Plaza store and 2610 E. 29th in the grocers Lincoln Heights store, are technically scheduled to close in February, says AmericanWests original filing with regulators, though the bank now is asking regulators for permission to postpone the closures until April.

The bank will retain its in-store branch at U-City because its located midway between an AmericanWest branch farther east at 15606 E. Sprague and a site the bank has acquired for a new branch at Appleway Boulevard and Dishman-Mica Road to the west.

The two in-store branches to be closed both have been open about three years, Brandenberg says. The employees who work at those branchestwo at each branchwill be transferred to other AmericanWest branches, he says.

Meanwhile, Rosauers doesnt plan to seek new bank tenants for the spaces AmericanWest will vacate, says Jeff Philipps, the Spokane-based grocery chains president.

Instead, Rosauers plans to use the space in its Five Mile store to expand that stores pharmacy department, he says. The chain hasnt decided what it will do with the extra space in its Lincoln Heights store, but is looking at bringing in some additional services there, Philipps says.

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