Commitment from the CEO

January 2018

To First American’s Clients, Colleagues and Business Partners,

What a year it has been.

In fiscal 2017, First American achieved a significant milestone.  New business volume for the year exceeded $1 billion for the first time.  This industry-leading annual growth rate of 70%, to $1.029 billion, was our 5th consecutive year of greater than 25% growth.  In recent months, I’ve frequently been asked “what is driving First American’s growth?”  The answer, of course, is our clients.

Too many commercial finance businesses today lose track of this seemingly basic principle: without clients, there is no business.  Our team at First American is deeply humbled and appreciative to play a small part in our clients’ success.  Our clients are extraordinary people who are working hard in important industries to literally change the world.  We will never take for granted the faith they have placed in us.  If you are a client reading this message: thank you.

As a service business, the loyalty of our clients is a direct function of the genuine and dedicated people at First American.  I am so grateful to work with an extraordinary team that balances providing best-in-class digital experiences with personalized service.  The passion they show each day is inspiring.  And our business’ success enables colleagues to invest in our communities, new technologies and new markets.

Our vision is to become the best company to work for and the best company to work with.  This bold vision serves as a guide in everything we do.  In 2017, our team earned national recognition, based on anonymous, third-party administered surveys:

  • FORTUNE 100 Best Medium Sized Workplaces in U.S. (#25)
  • FORTUNE 25 Best Small/Medium Workplaces in N.Y. (#6)
  • Entrepreneur Top Large Company Culture in U.S. (#14)
  • Selling Power 50 Best Companies to Sell For (#33)
  • Best Companies to Work For in New York (#6)
  • Association of National Advertisers REGGIE Award – Client Loyalty

As we become a larger organization, we are committed to acting small and thinking big.  To us, acting small is continuing to do all the client-focused things we did when we were a fraction of our current size.  It is knowing each colleague’s name.  It is wearing several hats.  It is seeing problems through to successful resolution.  It is never saying the words “that’s not my job” or “let me transfer you.”  Thinking big is having the courage to dream about what we can accomplish.  It is setting big goals for business and life.  It is exploring advanced technologies like A.I. and machine learning to make for better client service.  It is thinking beyond this week, this quarter or even this decade.

I am so proud of what our team has accomplished; however, we are only just beginning.  First American is a subsidiary of City National Bank, which is a Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) company.  We are proud to be a part of institutions that share our passion for accomplishing great things.  With the resources we have today, our future has truly never been brighter.

As the financial services industry is undergoing profound change, we are enthusiastic about being at the forefront.  I am honored to be on this journey, building our future together, with such sincere and talented colleagues.

Alan Sikora

Integrity + Smarts

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