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JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon announced plans in January to open 400 branches in cities where its bank doesn't have a physical presence. File/AP

One of the world's largest financial institutions is expanding further into South Carolina as it looks to gain a foothold in new markets.

New York-based Chase Bank announced Wednesday that it will be staffing its first Charleston loan office to focus on small and mid-sized businesses in the region. The JPMorgan Chase & Co. subsidiary also will be setting up shop down the coast in the Savannah area.

“Both cities have seen significant population and business growth over the last several years and their seaports help fuel their states’ economies,” Clarence Nunn, head of Chase’s middle-market business in the Southeast, said in a written statement. “We have been serving businesses in the Carolinas and Georgia for nearly a decade and are excited to build out local teams in these important coastal cities.”

An opening date has not been determined. Chase has not yet secured a permanent location for its Charleston office, which won't be a traditional consumer retail branch, spokesman Michael Fusco said.

"It's loans, it's cash management, it's advice," Fusco said. 

John Kopanski has been named to lead the coastal unit that will target businesses in Charleston and Savannah with more than $20 million in annual revenues. He is relocating to South Carolina from Atlanta.

A local executive will be hired later to focus on borrowers with less than $20 million in annual sales.

Chase previously opened a commercial lending outpost in Greenville. 

JPMorgan is global financial services giant that employs more than 252,000 workers. About half are in its consumer and community banking group.

Chase operates about 5,100 offices in 23 states.

Earlier this year, JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon announced the bank will be expanding into new U.S. markets. Most of that growth plan is based around consumer-oriented retail branches.

Contact John McDermott at 843-937-5572 or follow him on Twitter at @byjohnmcdermott