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The BG News
BG24 Newscast
November 30, 2023

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Sky is the limit for largest BG business

Falcons are known for being seen in the sky. But in Bowling Green, they do it in several senses. The city is not just a college town; it’s also the home of a $14.3 billion dollar company–Sky Financial Group.

Sky Bank was founded here in 1952, and while numerous name changes and merges have occurred throughout the company’s history, the headquarters remains in Bowling Green, currently at 221 South Church Street. There are also five financial centers and nine ATMs around the city.

Over the years Sky has also grown to become one of the top 50 financial services companies in the country, with 285 locations in Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, West Virginia, and Pennsylvania. A total of 4200 employees work for Sky, with more than 400 employed in Bowling Green alone.

Tim Dirrum, Vice President of Corporate Communications, said that despite being a large company, Sky has different regions which set it apart from some of the other large financial institutions.

“We’ve structured ourselves to be regionally based so that the people that deal with our clients live and work in the community,” Dirrum said. “It makes us much smaller in the customer’s eyes.”

Dirrum said that the ability to make decisions close to the client is important.

“When [clients] are dealing with someone close to where they live, it makes a big difference, as opposed to waiting for a decision for a long period of time from someone out of town,” he said.

There are eight total regions affiliated with Sky Bank, including the Mid Am region which covers Northwest Ohio, Southern Michigan, and Fort Wayne, Indiana. Sharon Speyer, president of the Mid Am region said that maintaining a regional concept has created a nice blend with the company.

“You have a large company that’s sophisticated, with the resources to provide enhanced services,” Speyer said. “But on the flip side, the clients are dealing with people that they know and are familiar with.”

Speyer said that in 2003, Sky held the number-one position in market share in Wood County, which she believes is largely due to the regional concept.

“I believe that [concept] is the backbone of our success,” Speyer said.

This regional concept has created several other avenues for success in the communities as well. Speyer said there are many ways that Sky gives back to the community.

“Not only do we give back in funds, but we give back in time that we all serve on local boards and in non profit organizations” Speyer said.

Durrin said that Sky has always provided support for Bowling Green and its community and will continue to help their clients in every way possible.

“Here in Bowling Green, we’ve been a really big community server and that in itself helps breath success,” Durrin said. “We’ve got similar products and services to other financial institutions, but we serve the clients well and fit their needs as opposed to just giving all the products under the sun that we can.”

While Sky is considered one of the larger financial institutions based on total asset size, the company prides itself on providing a smaller, more personal atmosphere for the customer. Durrin said their goal is to look specifically at what the needs are in the customer’s life and make recommendations, which is often difficult for a larger institution.

“[Other institutions] say they do that, but a lot of times they can’t really accomplish it,” Durrin said. “Our whole company lives and breaths it.”

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