It is crazy how quickly time flies! Five years ago, the Triumph investor group acquired Equity Bank and officially changed our name to Triumph Savings Bank. Over these past five years, the Triumph organization has gone through countless changes, acquisitions, and additions, making us almost unrecognizable compared to what we were in November 2010. On our fifth anniversary, we wanted to pause and look back to reflect on the journey from the perspective of some of Triumph’s early team members.
Aaron P. Graft
Aaron is the founder of Triumph and today serves as CEO of Triumph Bancorp, Inc.
The story of Triumph is more than five years old. It actually starts in 2006. The journey from those humble beginnings to where we are today is filled with a bunch of stories, a lot of laughs, a few good decisions, more blessings than we deserve, and a lot of great people. It’s been a great ride and I am excited to see where we go from here!
Travis was one of the early team members of Triumph and now serves as a member of the special assets team for TBK Bank, SSB.
It’s been quite a ride. We’ve done everything from moonlighting and underwriting apartment deals to working for a fledgling apartment owner with four guys in 1,000 square feet of open office space. When we joined Equity Bank, we added 35 new team members, and today, we’re an enterprise with over 500 employees. It has been both surreal and exciting to watch the Triumph organization grow into what it has become today.
Keith was the first team member of Triumph and now serves as a member of the special assets team for TBK Bank, SSB.
I remember Aaron saying, on a number of occasions in the first few years of Triumph, “This is real … it’s so real that we may not make it.” So, we did whatever we had to do to keep going. In order to lease apartments, we would pass out flyers in a Wal-Mart parking lot. We bought a 30-foot balloon and mounted it on the roof of the leasing office. I even stood on a corner dressed as a ridiculous cowboy riding an inflatable horse while holding a “Now Leasing” sign. Some of these worked and some didn’t. We just kept trying.
Walking out of our office one Friday afternoon in the summer of 2010, Aaron said, “By the way, if this Equity Bank purchase doesn’t go through, I’ve talked to a couple of people who might be able to hire you. Have a great weekend.” After that conversation, I didn’t really have a great weekend. Thankfully, the purchase did go through, giving Triumph the platform to grow into what it is today.
Gail served as the Chief Operations Officer of Equity Bank, SSB when it was acquired by Triumph and now serves as the Chief Operating Officer of TBK Bank, SSB.
The acquisition of Equity Bank by the Triumph investor group really began almost six and a half years ago. Aaron calls it “the longest regulatory approval process in history,” while I call it “him getting to know his partners”! Back then, I asked him if he really knew what he was getting into with all this “banking stuff.” As a banker for too many years to reveal, I was not really sure he and the Triumph group really knew what they were in for here. However, I will say this: Aaron and the Board are good listeners and they pay attention – not necessarily to gain, but to learn. And they have learned well. There may have been lots of early struggles, but they have resulted in lots of long-term rewards. Cheers to another five!
In recognition of what Triumph has achieved, here are the major milestones since our inception:
March 2006 – Aaron P. Graft founds Triumph Land & Capital Management
November 2010 – Triumph Land & Capital Management changes its name to Triumph Consolidated Cos.
November 2010 – Triumph acquires the stock of Equity Bank through its holding company, changing the names to Triumph Bancorp and Triumph Savings Bank
January 2012 – Triumph acquires Advance Business Capital, a leading transportation factoring company, which now operates as Triumph Business Capital
May 2012 – Triumph launches Triumph Commercial Finance, as asset based lending and equipment finance platform
March 2013 – Triumph announces the launch of Triumph Capital Advisors, an institutional asset management firm
October 2013 – Triumph acquires National Bancshares and its community banking subsidiary, THE National Bank, which now operates as Triumph Community Bank
June 2014 – Triumph acquires Doral Healthcare Finance, a specialized healthcare finance company, which now operates as Triumph Healthcare Finance
September 2014 – Triumph launches Triumph Insurance Group, an insurance provider for the transportation and equipment industry
November 2014 – Triumph announces initial public offering, listing on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the ticker symbol TBK
September 2015 – Triumph launches Triumph Premium Finance, a provider of customized premium financing solutions for the acquisition of property and casualty insurance coverage
October 2015 – Triumph completes the merger of Triumph Community Bank into Triumph Savings Bank and changes the name of the surviving organization to TBK Bank, SSB