In Our Community, Lifestyle Trends & Tips, Small Business Profile

Support Local Businesses on Small Business Saturday

Small Business Saturday is back! Saturday, November 24, 2018 is a day dedicated to supporting small businesses across the country. By shopping at small businesses, the mom-and-pop stores that are staples in our community, you are doing your part to help them thrive.

In 2010, American Express launched the first Small Business Saturday, encouraging shoppers nationwide to support local commerce. Since then, billions of dollars are spent on this Saturday at small and local businesses by tens of millions of people. We encourage you to do the same! Don’t do all your shopping at big retailers today, plan to spend some time shopping local. For every $100 spent at local merchants, $68 stays within the community, according to

Small Business Saturday is one of the biggest day of sales for the 23 million small businesses in the U.S. who represent about 54 percent of all U.S . retail sales, according to the Small Business Administration (SBA). Spending money locally helps boost small businesses, which helps them create jobs, which in turn powers the economy and revitalizes our community. Shop small, spread the word and know that you’re doing your part by giving back to the community you live in!  It’s a win win for all.

Wishing you all happy small business shopping day!


Small Business Profile, Sponsorships & Events

Two Can’t-Miss Events for Local Small Businesses

If you’re a local small business, here are two events you shouldn’t miss.

Financing Options for Small Business
This free SCORE Small Business Workshop, takes place at the Darien Library, Tuesday, May 8th from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. co-sponsored by Darien Library and First County Bank. This workshop will inform you about the different ways for small business owners to find capital sources via various Small Business Administration (SBA) Loan Programs. SBA programs work with commercial banks and nonprofit lenders to help small business owners.

Click here or the link below to Register Today.


Cybersecurity…Don’t Be a Victim!
This Business Panel Discussion is open to the public and takes place at the Darien Library Community Room, Wednesday, May 16th. Check-in begins at 5:15 p.m. followed by the panel discussion and networking opportunities from 5:45 – 7:00 p.m.

Members of the panel:

  • Mark Rosenbloom, Vice President, Manager of Cash Management Services, First County Bank
  • Garry Feldman, Founder, U.S. Computer Connection
  • Sherwin Yoder, Partner, Carmody Torrance Sandak & Hennessey, LLP
  • Mark Schulz, Vice President & Account Executive, Victor O. Schinnerer & Company
  • Moderator: Jack Horner, Merrill Lynch, Darien Chamber of Commerce Chairman

No registration required.

Small Business Profile, Smart Savings Tips

Celebrate National Small Business Week

This week, National Small Business Week will be celebrated across the country. We constantly hear the challenges and successes of starting and maintaining a small business; however, we don’t hear enough about the impact small businesses make in our community.

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announced, “National Small Business Week is being held from April 29-May 5 and is an annual event hosted by the U.S. Small Business Administration to recognize the nation’s top small businesses, entrepreneurs, small business advocates and champions. Every day they’re working to grow small businesses, create 21st century jobs, drive innovation, and increase America’s global competitiveness.”

We look forward to celebrating Small Business Week this week and every week by continually highlighting business events in our community and financial solutions for small businesses. You can participate by shopping local and continuing to support local, small businesses.

First County Bank Profile, Small Business Profile

Small Businesses Benefit from Cash Management: Meet Mario Maiorana

Maiorana, Mario

Mario Maiorana

Meet Mario Maiorana, Sales & Service Representative, Cash Management Services Department.

Tell us a little about yourself.
My name is Mario Maiorana and I am a Sales and Service Representatives in the Cash Management Services Department at First County Bank, located at 117 Prospect Street, Stamford.

My 11 years of experience with the Bank, enable me to understand our clients’ needs and recommend products and services that are best fitted for each client. The most important motivating factor for me is our customer’s success.

What is Cash Management?
Cash Management stands for solution-oriented products and services that meet our client’s needs of managing daily business processes, while maximizing cash flow and productivity.

Our Cash Management team strongly believes in the effectiveness and value of our products and you can always count on a personal, prompt and high level of service.

How do Cash Management products benefit small businesses?
Our products are designed to effectively accommodate small businesses by providing essential services such as: Merchant Services (Credit Card processing), Payroll Services, Business Credit Cards with various money saving options, Remote Deposit Capture, QuickBooks (Direct Connect),  ACH and Wire origination and Positive Pay, our fraud monitoring system.

In addition, we work closely with other departments across the Bank to deliver lending and investment solutions to aid our clients in successfully developing or expanding their business.

What is the most sought after CM product for small businesses?
Positive Pay seems to be the most sought after product Cash Management service.  Positive Pay is an anti-fraud tool that adds an additional level of security to a business checking account, to defend against check and ACH fraud.  It is quite topical, considering the high risk for fraud in today’s web-connected world.

Specific business types, such as attorneys with IOLTA accounts and non-profit organizations, are strongly recommended to have fraud protection by their auditors.  Others, particularly those who have experienced fraud in the past, are moving forward with setting up this service.

What success story can you share of how a business has benefited from Cash Management services?
A local, small law firm was referred to me. They wanted to be provided with additional information on our wire origination product.

The client was in the process of moving their business accounts to our Bank, and at the recommendation of our Stamford Office Branch Manager, I was able to have an open discussion about their previous banking experience and current service needs. Together we uncovered the tremendous value in two additional services that will help protect his business from fraud (Positive Pay), as well as an expedited payment system for vendors or clients (ACH origination).

Small Business Profile, Trends & Tips

Kicking off Small Business Week

NSBW_Banner_New (1)This week, National Small Business Week will be celebrated across the country. We constantly hear the challenges and successes of starting and maintaining a small business; however, we don’t hear enough about the impact small businesses make in our community.

Here are some eye-opening trends from the Small Business Administration – “Small Business, Big Impact!

  • The 28 million small businesses in America account for 54% of all U.S. sales.
  • Small businesses provide 55% of all jobs and 66% of all net new jobs since the 1970s.
  • The 600,000 plus franchised small businesses in the U.S. account for 40% of all retail sales and provide jobs for some 8 million people.
  • The small business sector in America occupies 30-50% of all commercial space, an estimated 20-34 billion square feet.
  • Since 1990, as big business eliminated 4 million jobs, small businesses added 8 million new jobs.

We look forward to celebrating Small Business Week by highlighting business events in our community and financial solutions for small businesses. You can participate by shopping local and continuing to support local, small businesses.

In Our Community, Small Business Profile

Next Week is National Small Business Week

National Small Business Week recognizes entrepreneurs and small business owners across the country. According to the Small Business Association, “more than half of Americans either own or work for a small business, and they create about two out of every three new jobs in the U.S. each year.”

We plan to celebrate National Small Business Week by highlighting business events in our community, community partners, and our financial solutions. Help us celebrate National Small Business Week next week by shopping local!

Small Business Profile

First County Bank Small Business Profile: James W. Lyman

James W. Lyman, Owner, View Entertainment based in Norwalk

“I need a partner that moves as quickly as I do and First County Bank does that for me.” ~ James Lyman

James W. Lyman is a busy entrepreneur, and his business moves quickly. He’s the owner/operator of View Entertainment based in Norwalk that specializes in Video and DVD distribution. Serving the entertainment industry primarily, View Entertainment has been in business for more than 20 years. James is the kind of entrepreneur who likes fast answers from people who hear what he’s saying and think about what he needs. He believes in partnership and wants to work with like-minded people who are true community partners. It’s this mind-set that brought him to partner with First County Bank, that and his desire to support local business.

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Small Business Profile

First County Bank Small Business Profile: Michael Totilo

Michael Totilo, Managing Partner of Totilo & Company, LLC based in Stamford


“When a client trusts you, you can give them referrals and First County Bank has always come through.” ~ Mike Totilo, Managing Partner, Totilo & Company, LLC.

Mike Totilo is managing partner of accounting firm Totilo & Company, LLC based in Stamford. He’s been a Certified Public Accountant in Stamford for more than 30 years offering a range of accounting, auditing and bookkeeping services.

In addition, Totilo is a member of the Stamford Planning Board and a long standing customer of First County Bank for both his personal and business needs as well as the needs of his clients.

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Small Business Profile

First County Bank Small Business Profile: Abby Bates

Attorney Abby Bates, Partner at Roberts & Bates, P.C., Stamford, CT


“First County Bank is really more than our bank; they’re an invaluable partner.” ~ Attorney Abby Bates

Abby Bates is a successful attorney and partner at Roberts & Bates, P.C. based in Stamford, Connecticut. Born in New London, Connecticut, Abby Bates earned her bachelor’s degree from Smith College and her JD from Northeastern University School of Law. She was admitted to the Massachusetts Bar and practiced there from 1978 to 1981. She then moved to Greenwich, Connecticut with her family where she was admitted to practice in 1982 and joined the firm of Roberts, Cousins & Sweigart in 1983.  Today known as Roberts & Bates, Bates became partner of the firm in 1995 and has been there ever since.

Serving clients in lower Fairfield County and throughout Connecticut, her practice areas include Residential Real Estate, Commercial Real Estate, Banking and Estate Planning. She has been an active member in the community, serving two years as co-chair of The Parents Exchange, sponsored by the Junior League of Greenwich, and has been a member of the Greenwich Choral Society since 1982 as well as serving on its Board for many years.  In addition to her involvement in the community, Abby’s firm has been a long-time business customer of First County Bank.
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Small Business Profile

First County Bank Small Business Profile: Attorney Richard Margenot

Richard J. Margenot

“I have First County Bank on speed dial” ~ Richard Margenot

Richard J. Margenot would be the first person to tell you that he wears many hats. As a multi-faceted Attorney with more than 21 years of legal practice in Connecticut and New York, he deals with a variety of clients who all have different needs. From buying houses to incorporating a business to setting up living trusts and much more, clients turn to Richard for his expert advice. He has a busy law practice specifically focusing on real estate, probate litigation, estate planning, conservatorship and business matters. Essentially, his practice is dedicated to wealth and health and the strategies to preserve each. Other hats Richard wears include an executive board member position with the Greenwich Council Boy Scouts of America and serves as vice president of operations. Richard is also a member of the board of directors for the Montgomery Pinetum Park Coalition Inc.
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