SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE:WFC) announced today that Laura Oberst will succeed Hugh Long as head of its Business Banking Group (BBG), effective immediately. Long will retire at year-end. Business Banking serves more than 100,000 U.S. businesses with annual sales from $5 million to $20 million.
Based in Minneapolis, Oberst has led the North Region of Wells Fargo Middle Market Banking since 2014. In her new BBG role, Oberst will oversee 4,700 Business Banking team members at 450 locations in 39 U.S. states. She now reports to Perry Pelos, head of Commercial Banking Services. Long will work closely with Oberst in the coming months to ensure a smooth transition.
A 32-year Wells Fargo veteran, Oberst began her career as a management trainee and became a retail branch manager in 1985 for the former Norwest Corp. She then held leadership roles of progressing responsibility in Community Banking and Commercial Banking. In Middle Market Banking, she oversaw more than 350 team members in 10 states, from the Dakotas to Ohio.
“Laura is an extraordinary leader,” said Pelos. “Her ability to put customers and team members at the center of all she does has contributed to her success at each step of her career. She will take Business Banking to the next stage, providing even more businesses with our continuum of care and preparing them for the next phase of their growth.”
Oberst has also been instrumental in mentoring and developing diverse Wells Fargo leaders. In 2009, she helped launch Wells Fargo’s Women in Wholesale Group, which now boasts 2,000 team members and has increased female leadership in Wells Fargo commercial banking businesses.
“I’d like to thank Hugh for his 43 years of service to Wells Fargo and for his enduring dedication to helping businesses succeed,” said Pelos. “I wish him well as he begins his retirement. He will be missed.”
Oberst earned her bachelor’s degree in business administration from North Dakota State University in Fargo, North Dakota, and her associate’s degree in accounting from Minnesota State University Moorhead.
Oberst serves on the board of directors for HealthPartners, Inc., the Greater MSP Economic Development Partnership, and the North Dakota Trade Office. She chairs the Wells Fargo Minnesota Leadership Council and the company’s Metropolitan Contributions Committee.
About Business Banking Group
Business Banking offers customers a breadth of products and services provided by Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. or its affiliates, including credit, cash management, risk management, employee benefits, succession, and wealth management. More business banking companies call Wells Fargo their primary bank than any other peer bank competitor (Barlow Research survey of businesses with annual sales from $5 to $20 million; 8 quarters ending Q3 2015).
Wells Fargo’s Small Business Administration (SBA) Lending Group is part of Business Banking. Wells Fargo is the No. 1 SBA 7(a) lender in total dollar volume for seven consecutive years (federal fiscal years 2009 – 2015) and in dollars and units during federal fiscal year 2015.
About Wells Fargo
Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) is a diversified, community-based financial services company with $1.9 trillion in assets. Founded in 1852 and headquartered in San Francisco, Wells Fargo provides banking, insurance, investments, mortgage, and consumer and commercial finance through more than 8,600 locations, 13,000 ATMs, the internet (wellsfargo.com) and mobile banking, and has offices in 36 countries and territories to support customers who conduct business in the global economy. With approximately 268,000 team members, Wells Fargo serves one in three households in the United States. Wells Fargo & Company was ranked No. 27 on Fortune’s 2016 rankings of America’s largest corporations. Wells Fargo’s vision is to satisfy our customers’ financial needs and help them succeed financially. Wells Fargo perspectives are also available at Wells Fargo Blogs and Wells Fargo Stories.