This excerpt taken from the PNC 8-K filed Mar 5, 2008.
Looking Ahead As We Continue to Build a Great Company
We recognize 2008 will be a challenging year for everyone in the financial services industry. The economy will not grow at the rate it did in 2007. Consumer spending will not be as robust, market volatility is expected, and the current credit cycle will generate higher loan losses.
Those factors are beyond our control. That stated, we remain committed to winning in the marketplace. Our focus in 2008 will be on controlling what is within our reach, which means we will execute our strategies to grow revenue faster than expenses while maintaining a moderate risk profile.
In Retail Banking, we see growth opportunities with our newly acquired banks. Once integrated into our technology platform, we can expand the distribution of our fee-based products as we did when we acquired Riggs National Bank in 2005. In those branches, we grew product and service-related fees by 60 percent in less than two years. We also are expanding our use of technology, including the launch of a small business portal and mobile banking, to better serve businesses and to attract new customer segments.
Our Corporate & Institutional Banking segment recognizes its customers want consultative sales and is implementing a team-based approach designed to make it easy for customers to do business with us. We also see growth opportunities in the more than $2 trillion healthcare payment industry with our healthcare payment product. This automated system enables healthcare providers and third-party payers to electronically manage the increasingly complex healthcare information and payment process.
Our PFPC segment continues to transform itself from an information processor to an information provider by adding the capabilities of Albridge Solutions and Coates Analytics, both acquired in the fourth quarter of 2007. This provides us with opportunities to offer higher margin, transaction-based services to fund clients within the United States. Leveraging its international growth, PFPC recently opened an office in Poland as it continues to expand the comprehensive services it provides to European investment companies.
For PNC, we see 2008 as a time to further differentiate our franchise as we continue to build a great company.
To do this, we are strengthening our brand so customers see PNC as a true banking partner. Our employees are key to this effort, and we are committed to training and developing our diverse workforce so customers can achieve their dreams. We are also asking our employees to identify innovative and creative ideas so we can deepen our customer relationships.
By advancing our brand equity, employee engagement and innovation, we can further transform our culture and our company. We aspire to be a company that consistently grows over time, and is led by employees who are focused on making it easy for customers to do business with us.
We are relentlessly focused on the numbers that drive our business success, but we are greater than the sum of our financial results. We are a team of 28,000 employees, dedicated to delivering on our promises by consistently managing risk, performing for our customers and our communities, and returning value to our shareholders. That is a great company, and I believe we are focused on a course to reach that goal.
We are proud of all of our accomplishments. On behalf of everyone at PNC, I want to thank you, our shareholders and customers, for your continued trust. We value your confidence in us as we continue to build a great company.
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ABOUT THE PNC/STERLING FINANCIAL CORPORATION TRANSACTION
The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. and Sterling Financial Corporation have filed a proxy statement/prospectus and other relevant documents concerning the merger with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (the SEC). WE URGE INVESTORS TO READ THE PROXY STATEMENT/PROSPECTUS (WHICH WAS FIRST MAILED TO STERLING SHAREHOLDERS ON OR ABOUT FEBRUARY 13, 2008) AND ANY OTHER DOCUMENTS FILED WITH THE SEC IN CONNECTION WITH THE MERGER OR INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE IN THE PROXY STATEMENT/PROSPECTUS, BECAUSE THEY WILL CONTAIN IMPORTANT INFORMATION.
Investors may obtain these documents free of charge at the SECs Web site (www.sec.gov). In addition, documents filed with the SEC by The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. will be available free of charge from Shareholder Relations at (800) 843-2206. Documents filed with the SEC by Sterling Financial Corporation will be available free of charge from Sterling Financial Corporation by contacting Shareholder Relations at (877) 248-6420.
The directors, executive officers, and certain other members of management and employees of Sterling Financial Corporation are participants in the solicitation of proxies in favor of the merger from the shareholders of Sterling Financial Corporation. Information about the directors and executive officers of Sterling Financial Corporation is included in the proxy statement for its May 8, 2007 annual meeting of shareholders, which was filed with the SEC on April 2, 2007. Additional information regarding the interests of such participants is included in the proxy statement/prospectus and the other relevant documents filed with the SEC.