After opening several branches in Nashville over the last year, banking giant JPMorgan Chase is planning to open its first branch in Williamson County by the middle of 2021.
The Chase branch will be located at 3030 Mallory Lane in Franklin, near the intersection of Cool Springs Boulevard and Mallory Lane. The property previously housed the Gary Force Acura used-car dealership and Chase officials plan to tear down the existing structure and build a branch with a drive-thru ATM.
In the spring of 2019, JPMorgan Chase leaders, the largest bank in the country with more than $2 trillion in assets, said they were planning to expand to nine new markets, including Middle Tennessee. By December, Chase opened its first branch in Berry Hill, and followed up with two more Nashville branches and a location in Smyrna. In the next few months, the company plans to open branches in Donelson, East Nashville, Belle Meade and North Nashville.
The ultimate goal is to open between 15 and 20 branches in Middle Tennessee. Denise Horvath, the head of Chase branches in Tennessee, said she wants to be strategic about the expansion in Williamson County, opening branches in places where clients live and work. Finding those locations could require some patience.
"We don't want to just drop a pin and say, ‘We want to be in Williamson County and we'll take the first opportunity available,’” she said. “There's a lot of information that goes into that. There's a lot of strategy.”
Horvath didn’t say how many branches Chase hopes to open in Williamson but noted that the county’s growth presents a lot of opportunities. She said the county would be a focal point in 2021 and 2022 and noted the fast-growing area around Nolensville as a location the bank is interested in exploring.
The company recently applied for approval to open a branch in the Nolensville area at the intersection of Old Hickory Boulevard and Nolensville Pike, a stone’s throw away from the Davidson-Williamson line.
Horvath also mentioned South Franklin as an area that could present a good opportunity, in part because of its proximity to Spring Hill and Thompson’s Station.
“From an affordability perspective, buying houses in Spring Hill or Thompson's Station makes sense. We obviously want to be accessible to a very growing area as well,” she said.
Chase opened a commercial banking office serving mid-size companies in downtown Nashville in 2011 and private banking offices two years later.
“Williamson County is hugely important for us,” Jeff Goodwin, Tennessee region manager for JPMorgan Chase’s middle-market group, said in a statement. “The new branch in Franklin will be a critical asset to lift the Chase brand, deepen our commitment to the market and better serve our clients.”
Chase faces plenty of competition in Williamson’s growing market. Bank deposits in the county were $11.1 billion at mid-year, up 80 percent from a decade ago. Following its acquisition in August of Franklin Synergy Bank, FirstBank now has the biggest share and is followed by Bank of America, Regions Bank and Nashville-based Pinnacle Bank.
Another big national name also has its sights set on local growth. In July, PNC Bank, the No. 7 bank in the U.S. by assets, opened its first retail branch in Williamson — on McEwen Drive, a mile south of Chase’s planned office — and plans to open more branches in Middle Tennessee this year.
“From an opportunity perspective, obviously Williamson County is continuing to grow. It has a lot of families, a lot of business,” she said. “We know that it's definitely an area we want to be in.”