by Stephen Dafoe
After almost 12 years of working for ATB Financial, Alicia Sero and her husband Shane took over the local banking business Feb. 1 as owner-managers.
“ATB Financial has about 140 of what they call Owner Managed Branches,” Sero explained. “It’s like a franchise opportunity for a bank. You purchase it like a franchise and then you are using the ATB Financial name.”
Sero was working between the ATB location and neighbouring H&R Block facility, but since last November has focused purely on running the ATB side.
The Cardiff entrepreneur said the current owner was looking to downsize towards retirement and offered Sero the opportunity.
“She offered it to me because I’d been here so long,” she said. “I was super excited, but a little bit nervous at the same time.”
Sero said taking over the franchise will mean some changes.
“I’m hoping to take what we have here and grow it. That likely means a new location within a year or so, and a full-service ABM within the year,” she said. “We probably will have more staff, too.”
Sero said the ATB location could do everything a branch can do. Transactions, US cash, certified cheques, as well as loans, lines of credit, and business, personal and agricultural loans. Additionally, MasterCard is offered in US and Canadian currency, and investments are also available.
In addition to full banking, Sero says Morinville residents can expect full involvement in the community.
“I have been in the past involved in the parades, but I want to get more involved and give back to the community as far as getting involved in the events and having barbecue events,” Sero said. “Hoping to get involved with different groups – I’m on the fundraising committee for Jessica Martel.
Sero said she loves working at ATB and wants to be there for the community and clients, offering new services and helping people out.
Alicia Sero and ATB took home Small Business of the Year from last year’s Chamber Awards. The video profile from that event is posted below.