In March 1852 Henry Wells and William Fargo founded Wells, Fargo & Co. to serve the West. The new company offered banking (buying gold, and selling paper bank drafts as good as gold) - and express (rapid delivery of the gold and anything else valuable). Wells Fargo opened for business in the gold rush port of San Francisco, and soon Wells Fargo's agents opened offices in the other new cities and mining camps of the West. In the boom and bust economy of the 1850 s, Wells Fargo earned a reputation of trust by dealing rapidly and responsibly with people's money. In the 1860 s, it earned everlasting fame - and its corporate symbol - with the grand adventure of the overland stagecoach line.

In 1888, Wells Fargo became the country's first nationwide express company. It adopted the motto "Ocean-to-Ocean" to describe its service that connected over 2, 500 communities in 25 states, and "Over-the-Seas" to highlight its lines linking America's increasingly global economy. Today, Wells Fargo & Company is a diversified financial services company with $428 billion in assets, providing banking, insurance, investments, mortgage and consumer finance to more than 23 million customers from more than 6, 000 stores and the internet (wells fargo. com) across North America and elsewhere internationally. Wells Fargo's vision statement reads "We want to satisfy all of our customers' financial needs, help them succeed financially, be the premier provider of financial services in every one of our markets, and be known as one of America's great companies." Goals We must offer better products and a broader product line than our local competitors, Grow annual earnings per share at a double-digit compound rate, Be among the very best in ROE with a 20 percent or higher return. Lose fewer team members and lose fewer customers every year than any other competitor in our industry.

Grow revenue twice as fast as expenses. Sell at least eight products to every customer. Ten Strategies 1. Investments, Brokerage, Trust and Insurance This is a prime example of "going where the money is." At year-end 2003, 14 percent of our banking earnings came from investments, brokerage, trust and insurance-over double where we were a few years ago-but it's still not good enough. We must increase that to at least 25 percent. Less than five percent of our 11 million banking households have relationships with our brokerage business.

Less than two percent buy insurance through us. 2. "Going for Gr-Eight" Double the number of products our consumer and business customers have with us to eight products per customer. 193. Doing it Right for the Customer Our product is service and advice.

We want to be advocates for our customers, put them at the center of everything we do and give them such outstanding service and advice that they will give us all their business, honor us with repeat purchases and rave about us to their family, friends and business associates. 4. Banking with a Mortgage and a Home Equity Loan We want all our mortgage customers in our 23 banking states to bank with us. We also want all our banking customers-who need a mortgage or a home equity loan-to get it through Wells Fargo.

Eighty one percent of our banking households that have a mortgage have it with one of our competitors. Only about 18 percent of our mortgage customers have a home equity loan with us. 5. Wells Fargo Cards in Every Wells Fargo Wallet Every one of our creditworthy customers should have a Wells Fargo credit card and debit card. Only twenty-seven percent of our banking customers have a credit card with Wells Fargo.

Eighty-six percent have a Wells Fargo debit card. 6. When, Where and How As a national leader in distributing financial services, we offer customers more choices than any other company-traditional stores, supermarket stores, ATMs, Phone Banks, internet and mail-when, where and how they want to use them. Very few, if any, customers are.

We integrate these channels so we can offer all our products and services through all of them-any time, anywhere our customers want to be served. 7. "Information-Based" Marketing We must take full advantage of what we know about our customers " needs so we can offer them the choice, convenience and price benefits of giving us all their business. We use technology not to de-personalize service but to personalize it. Thanks to technology, we know how 20 many products each customer has with us. We know which products customers have and what they might need.

We can predict the products they " ll most likely need-based on account balances, life events, transaction history, and how they access Wells Fargo. With that knowledge, we can tailor sales messages through our Phone Banks, ATMs, wells fargo. com and statement mailings. The winners in financial services will be companies that know the most about their customers' needs, obtain that information least expensively, treat it respectfully, use it most effectively, and attract new customers most efficiently.

8. Be Our Customers' Payment Processor Banking is necessary. Banks are not. Banks traditionally have been the intermediary in the billions of transactions among consumers, businesses and the government. That role, however, is not a birthright.

We need to make sure Wells Fargo adds real value so we can bethe intermediary-electronic or paper-whenever and wherever our customers buy services and the payments link for our customers among all their Wells Fargo accounts. We generate about 30 percent of our revenue through payment services such as checks, credit cards, cash and securities, direct deposit and wire transfer. We must maintain our position as our customers' first choice for payment processing. 9. Premier Customers We must attract more-and keep all our current-premier and excellent customers. We also need to aggressively cross-sell households that have the potential to become premier customers.

We must focus even more on closing the "back door"-reducing, by half, the number of customers who leave us or give us less of their business. 10. People as a Competitive Advantage Most importantly, we must do even better in training, rewarding and recognizing all our team members. 21 We must build an inclusive work environment and a diverse organization. All members of our team should know they " re valued, that they can go as far as their ability and desire to work hard will take them. We must be a company that encourages a healthy balance in work and home life.

Our success has as much to do with attitude as aptitude-what " sin our hearts not just our heads. Our success depends on how much our team members care for their customers, for each other, their communities and our stockholders. People commit themselves to other people, not organizations. Processes are important but they don't do the work, people do.

Because we believe in people as our competitive advantage, we " ll continue to invest in our "human capital." It's the most important, valuable investment.