Sept 26 Columbia Banking System Inc
said it would buy West Coast Bancorp for about $506
million to expand its footprint in Washington and Oregon, the
latest in a slew of deals in the community bank sector.
There have been 5 deals by publicly listed community banks
this month, with values ranging from $3 million to over $900
million. Industry experts have predicted an increase in small
bank mergers in the next few years.
The combination of Columbia Banking and West Coast Bancorp
would have about $7.2 billion in assets and over 150 branches.
There are over 7200 banks in the United States, the vast
majority of which have less than $10 billion in assets.
Columbia Banking said it would pay for the deal with $264.5
million in cash and 12.8 million shares.
West Coast shareholders can choose to receive payment in
common stock, cash or a combination of the two.
Columbia said West Coast shareholders would receive about
$23.10 per share, a 14 percent premium to the stock's Tuesday
West Coast shareholders would own about 24 percent of the
Columbia said the deal would add to its earnings per share
immediately and that it would be able to cut about a quarter of
West Coast's operating expense base.
Columbia's shares closed at $18.85 on the Nasdaq on Tuesday.
West Coast's stock closed at $20.18.