4 | LMT BUSINESS JOURNAL MONDAY, JULY 16, 2007 MONDAY, JULY 16, 2007 LMT BUSINESS JOURNAL | 13
IBC Bank launches Operation Care Drop ENTERPRISING ENTREPRENEUR
Local branches to serve as drop-off stations for supplies and treats for overseas troops Couple brings Montana
SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
SAN ANTONIO – IBC Bank has
initiated Operation Care Drop to
tary delivery system provides a
secure and streamlined means for
the American people to deliver
their well wishes to those in harm’s
Mike’s steaks to Laredo
support our nation’s troops. way on their behalf without over- By MIKE HALL
Through this community-wide loading the military delivery sys- LAREDO MORNING TIMES
effort, 22 local IBC Bank branches, tem.
four Commerce Bank branches and “IBC Bank is excited to offer this Janet and Jim Holt like Laredo,
more than 120 IBC locations opportunity for the community to as if it was their hometown.
throughout Texas and Oklahoma come together to help support our Jim Holt said the new invest-
will serve as drop-off stations for troops. Our nation’s birthday is cer- ment is more a restaurant with bar, Courtesy photo | Montana Mike’s Steakhouse
care package sup- tainly a time for more focused and the whole experience is Janet and Jim Holt opened Montana Mike’s Steakhouse July 5 at 2445 San Isidro Parkway,
plies from reflection on the many freedoms designed for the family in mind. the sixth location in Texas.
Monday, July 9 and liberties that we enjoy as “With 30 years of experience in
through Tuesday, American citizens. the steak restaurant business, we
July 31. For some Dennis E. Nixon, chairman of recognize that people are ready for
troops, these care IBC’s parent International this casual dining steakhouse in
package contribu- Bancshares Corporation, said their neighborhood,” said Janet
tions are the only “Operation Care Drop provides us Holt.
communi cation with an opportunity to ‘do more’ for “Based on the success of the
NIXON from home they the men and women of our armed Sirloin Stockade location, we felt
will receive. forces who dedicate their lives to this was an ideal market to intro-
Participating in Operation Care protecting those rights.” duce Montana Mike’s menu.”
Drop is easy and convenient, as 13 “We’re proud that our many Montana Mike’s, a full-service
of IBC’s area branches are open convenient branch locations and steakhouse concept specializing in
seven days a week. To help pack seven-day banking services will big portions at a great value, opened
and ship the goods overseas to ser- help make it easier for more mem- July 5 at 2445 San Isidro Parkway.
vicemen and women, IBC will bers of the local community to AP This is the first Montana Mike’s
work with Operation participate in this important location in Laredo, and the sixth in Photo by Mike Hall | Laredo Morning Times
U.S. soldiers force their way into a building during a pre-dawn raid in Baqouba, 35 miles northeast of Baghdad, Iraq, July 9. U.S. and Iraqi
Interdependence (OI), the premier effort.” Texas. Laredo aative Leroy Palau, left, general manager of Montana Mike’s Steakhouse, poses
forces detained nine suspected al-Qaida members.
Civilian-to-Military Delivery People can support Operation Laredo is ready for a Western- with co-ownerJanet Holt at the restaurant. No pictured is her husband, Jim.
System in the U.S. Care Drop by: capable of fitting inside a quart- quantity for later assembly. ness and encouragement go a long themed steakhouse, Jim Holt said.
Since its founding in 2001, Purchasing care package sup- sized Ziploc bag. Donors can also Writing a letter of support or way to boost morale and spread the “There’s other steakhouses Jim Holt said the new venture sirloin steak, grilled chicken and
Operation Interdependence, OI, has plies and placing them in the “Drop contribute approved items in bulk thanks to a soldier. Words of kind- spirit of patriotism. around, of course. It has a hunting came to life in about eight months seafood are featured, as well as
become the fastest growing volun- Zone” box at any IBC Bank branch. camp theme. We have a lady who after the decision was made to start steak burgers served on fresh,
teer organization in the U.S., with A “shopping list” of suggested comes around and decorates with Montana Mike’s. Construction for made-from-scratch buns. The
participants in 19 countries, all 50 donation items (gum, travel-size the plants and antiques.” the chain prototype design began restaurant also offers a full bar.
states and more than 8,000 cities toiletries, playing cards, etc.) is “This is a little different concept. two months after the land was pur- A full-service steakhouse con-
across the U.S. available at all branches for your They started this about five years chased and the builder was select- cept specializing in big portions at a
The OI logistical civilian-to-mili- convenience. Supplies should be ago and we’ve been watching it. The ed. great value, Montana Mike’s is
sales have been real good. After Jim Holt said the overall invest- “beefing” up its presence in select
they did Corpus Christi and ment for the project has been about states, taking advantage of the
Victoria, the sales were good and $2.3 million, with extra expenses, steakhouse explosion playing out in
we wanted to try one (in Laredo.) about $50,000, going to required markets all across the country.
The response has been great,” he fire sprinkler systems and alarms. Currently, Montana Mike’s has 26
said. “This building is designed with locations operating across the
“We’ve just had an overflow all firewalls, and automatic doors close United States, and is also targeting
the time. This is a good location. if the fire breaks out in the back. Missouri, Kentucky, Ohio, Illinois
When we started looking around, They made us put in the extra sys- and Oklahoma for expansion.
we were under some constraints as tems. Over time it will pay for itself “Montana Mike’s has a strong
to what we could spend for the lot. with insurance rates,” he said. history, a rich heritage and a loyal
This area seems to be a place good The business brings 110 people customer base,” said Madison Jobe,
in the future with H-E-B and the to the payroll, some full-time, and vice president of franchise develop-
new shopping center across the most students working in the sum- ment for Montana Mike’s. “Janet
street,” Jim said. “It just looked like mer as part-time workers earning and Jim Holt are an excellent fit to
a area that would keep growing.” full-time hours now. develop the Montana Mike’s fran-
The couple currently owns four Holt said he is always in the chise in Laredo. They completely
Sirloin Stockades, one of which is market for good workers. understand the strength of the
located in Laredo. Both restaurants “We had a pretty hard time getting brand and its potential.”
are part of the multi-unit restaurant up to 50 (employees), but as we got Hours of operation for
chain run by Stockade Companies. closer to opening, they saw the build- Montana Mike’s of Laredo are
“We are incredibly excited about ing going up and we got a lot more Sunday through Thursday 11 a.m.
the opportunity to further expand applications. to 10 p.m. and Friday and
the Montana Mike’s brand into With a menu designed to feed Saturday 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Laredo and look forward to feeding any appetite, Montana Mike’s spe- Montana Mike’s of Laredo can be
the local appetite with a relaxed, cializes in naturally aged, USDA reached at 729-1790.
family-friendly atmosphere, excep- steaks, hand-cut at the restaurant (Mike Hall may be contacted at
tional menu and outstanding serv- and grilled to customers’ tastes. 728-2529 or by e-mail at
ice,” Janet Holt said. Baby back ribs and chicken-fried firstname.lastname@example.org.)