JPMorgan Chase opens its first commercial banking office in Las Vegas

Seth Wenig / AP

In this Monday, Oct. 21, 2013, file photo, the JPMorgan Chase logo is displayed at its headquarters in New York.

JPMorgan Chase is expanding its commercial banking business to Nevada, the company announced Thursday.

Through its Chase branch network, JPMorgan Chase has offered financial services in Las Vegas since the 2008 acquisition of Washington Mutual. The debut of the commercial banking office will be followed later this year with another new retail branch in Las Vegas and two retail branch openings in Reno, company officials said.

Several more branches will open in Reno and the Lake Tahoe region in 2018, they said.

Opening in the Las Vegas market grew out of a long-term growth plan throughout the Western region, said Douglas Petno, chief executive officer of commercial banking for JPMorgan Chase, in Las Vegas on Wednesday to mark the opening at 3770 Howard Hughes Parkway.

“We’re making a bet on a lot of these different geographies,” Petno said. “We feel very good about everywhere we’ve gone based on business climate, the number of existing clients, where we think client growth will be over time, the types of clients and industries we’re excited about.”

Those industries include tech, health care, energy, beverage, and media and entertainment.

Veteran banker Megan Ackaert will lead the team as market executive for Nevada’s Middle Market Banking & Specialized Industries (MMBSI) business.

“As Nevada’s economy grows stronger and more diverse, it’s an exciting time to build our team in Las Vegas,” Ackaert said. “We are thrilled to partner with local businesses and provide them with customized solutions and resources that will help them achieve their goals.”

Megan Ackaert, JP Morgan Chase

Megan Ackaert, JP Morgan Chase

Ackaert, who moved to Las Vegas from Seattle earlier this year, has more than 13 years of banking experience and six years with Chase. She is a member of the United Way of Southern Nevada Women’s Leadership Council and volunteers with various nonprofit organizations in Las Vegas. She graduated from the University of Washington with a bachelor's in business administration–finance.

“The city’s been incredibly welcoming,” Ackaert said. “I’ve spent a lot of time meeting with business leaders, the UNLV team and others to get a feel for what’s important in the community. There’s been a real push, a real focus on diversifying the types of businesses that are located in Las Vegas. We just feel the excitement and optimism here, and we want to be part of it."