WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. -- Mike Brady took over as the President of Greyston Bakery in 2012 with an immediate objective of finding a local bank that shared his vision and commitment to the community. He found both at The Westchester Bank.
With Brady’s guidance and The Westchester Bank’s capital, Yonkers-based Greyston Bakery increased revenues by more than 50 percent since taking over.
Brady, who was named the President and CEO of Greyston this past March, also developed initiatives that resulted in national distribution of the bakery’s brownies and cookies through Whole Foods Market and strengthened a 25-year relationship with Ben & Jerry’s and its parent, Unilever.
Brady said The Westchester Bank has helped his company’s growth in several ways. “They’re just very responsive,’’ Brady said. “They offer a lot of flexibility and have been very accommodating in their line of credit allowing us to be creative in the way we do our financing.”
Perhaps just as important for Brady, The Westchester Bank has been a partner in the community as well. Greyston became New York’s first Benefit Corporation in 2012. A benefit corporation is a legal entity that is required by law to create a general benefit for society as well as for its shareholders. Benefit Corporations must have a material positive impact on society, and must consider how their decisions affect their employees, their community and the environment.
Greyston’s programs assist individuals and families in visualizing and realizing their paths to self-sufficiency. It uses an “open door” hiring policy, offering employment opportunities regardless of educational attainment, work history, or past social barriers such as incarceration, homelessness or drug use. The business, which started in 1982 under Bernard Glassman, has always focused on social objectives in addition to its revenue goals.
That philosophy melds well with The Westchester Bank and its President and CEO, John Tolomer, who also encourages his employees to embrace social causes. “That’s an important reason why we are such good partners,’’ Tolomer said. “It’s in our interest to support like-minded businesses.”
Brady said that working together with The Westchester Bank team has been professional, courteous and always committed to Greyston’s success.
“The Bank has an understanding of Westchester County and the entire region, and use that to their advantage,” Brady said. “They are really engaged in everything we do. The Westchester Bank couldn’t be more responsive. There are not many banks you could say that about. They are watching over us, and I appreciate their commitment to our success.”