Wachovia branches prepare for transition to Wells Fargo

Photo by Tori Boone

Photo by Tori Boone

LAWRENCEVILLE -- The effects of the largest bank merger in U.S. history are starting to make their way into Gwinnett, as county Wachovia branches are preparing for their transition to Wells Fargo.

Wachovia, the No. 1 banking company in Gwinnett with more than $2.2 billion in deposits, has 29 branches within the county and will make the leap to Wells Fargo in October.

Remodeling, more hiring and better services are on the slate, Wells Fargo spokesman Jay Lawrence said.

"We're working hard to be the best local bank in Gwinnett with all the advantages of a great national bank," said Scott Asher, Gwinnett's community bank president. "Gwinnett residents will like what we're doing and we're looking forward to the transition in October."

Two bank stores in Gwinnett -- at Gwinnett Place Mall and on Steve Reynolds Boulevard -- have already been remodeled to fit Wells Fargo's "open floor plan," serving as prototype branches indicating the changes to come, Lawrence said.

The company employs more than 400 people in the county, and is already in the process of hiring more tellers and bankers.

Newer, envelope-free ATMs are on the docket as well.

"We're dedicated to meeting as many of our customers' financial needs as possible, and the new offerings are already helping," Asher said. "These are more ways we can help them succeed financially."

Wachovia merged with Wells Fargo on Dec. 31, 2008. Five states (Arizona, California, Colorado, Illinois and Nevada) have already seen successful conversions, Lawrence said.