Michigan's biggest bank to relocate headquarters to Detroit, bringing 500 workers

click to enlarge COURTESY PHOTO
Courtesy photo

So long, mid-Michigan. Hello, Detroit.

Chemical Bank has announced it's relocating its headquarters from Midland to downtown Detroit, in a move that will bring at least 500 new workers to the city.

The plan was announced this morning at the corner of Woodward Avenue and Elizabeth Street, where a 20-story building will be developed to house the workers. Chemical Bank is the largest bank in Michigan. Crain's Detroit Business called the company's relocation "one of the biggest corporate recruitment wins for the city in recent memory."

The bank merged with Troy-based Talmer Bancorp Inc. in 2016. The Detroit News reports it has more than $20 billion in assets, 3,300 employees, and more than 200 banking centers in Michigan, Ohio and Indiana,.

The headquarters relocation is an apparent about-face for Chemical, whose CEO reportedly promised that the bank would stay headquartered in Midland when he took the job a year ago. The Midland Daily News reported last summer that CEO Thomas Shafer, who was living in southeast Michigan at the time, said he'd move to Midland to take on the new role and wanted "to make it known the bank will stay headquartered in Midland."

Regardless, Detroit is welcoming the news. As business and government officials were unveiling details of the plan, the city issued a release announcing that it has selected Chemical Bank, in partnership with First Independence Bank, as its new primary banking partner. The decision to have Chemical Bank provide banking services like "deposit, receivables and payment solutions" was made in part because of its "strong commitments to Detroit." The bank replaces Chase as the city's go-to.

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