"You can’t place a value on values."
--CEO Richard Hansen
Johnson Bank, part of Johnson Financial Group, the $5.7 billion financial services holding company, has decided to decline participation in the U.S. Treasury’s T.A.R.P Program after being notified that they were accepted to receive as much as $100 million last week.
“While in the short-term those dollars are attractive to a growing company like ours, in the long-term they would compromise the things we hold most dear- including the unique culture of our company,” said Richard Hansen, President and CEO of Johnson Financial Group. “You can’t place a value on values.”
A growing number of healthy banks are rejecting funds from the Treasury Department's $700 billion T.A.R.P. program citing concerns over their ability to run their business as well as the government’s restrictions on institutions that participate. The banks that qualified for aid have rejected the Treasury's funds; say government officials, bank executives and the Government Accountability Office, who cite the prospect of new strings as a factor.
“We believe accepting funds would stand in the way of our mission, vision and values - the very things that have allowed our company to grow the last few decades,” said Hansen in a statement from the bank today. “Plus, we’re able to sustain growth without the funds.”
The privately owned financial services company is owned by members of the Samuel C. Johnson Family. Helen Johnson Leipold serves as chairman of Johnson Financial Group.
“One of the benefits of being a fifth-generation, family-owned company are the values that have guided and kept us strong through good times and bad. It’s what our clients, associates have come to expect and simply can’t be measured in dollars and cents.” Hansen said.
Johnson Financial Group, which was recently recognized as #25 on FORTUNE magazine’s 100 Best Places to Work in the country, and Hansen added they will continue to do business “as we always have, by doing right by our associates, so they in turn are better able to serve our clients and will continue to enjoy the freedom to contribute to a variety of community events and programs without government oversight.”