Magazine article American Banker

Puerto Rico's BanPonce Sees Brighter Prospects

Magazine article American Banker

Puerto Rico's BanPonce Sees Brighter Prospects

Article excerpt

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico -- An aggressive series of mainland acquisitions will push BanPonce Corp. earnings above $80 million in 1992, and close to $100 million in the following year, bank president Richard Carrion said in an interview.

"We will have a much better year in 1992 than last year," he said. "We should be in line with what analysts have been expecting," which is in the $80 million to $85 million net income range.

In 1991, BanPonce and its main subsidiary, Banco Popular, earned $64.6 million. For the first half of 1992, the net was $40.9 million, attributed in part to an improving economy and reduced provisions for loan losses.

"We'd like to reach $100 million by 1993, because that's been our goal for some time," Mr. Carrion said.

|Other Deals Pending'

With its acquisition last month of seven branches of the former American Savings Bank, the bank expanded its New York presence to $1.2 billion in deposits and a total of 28 branches.

"We have a couple of other deals pending, so we expect to end the year with about $1.5 billion in deposits and about 30 branches in the city," Mr. Carrion said.

BanPonce's New York strategy has been to focus on consumer banking, and loans to small and medium-size companies. Last year, the bank backed more than one-third of all U.S. Small Business Administration loans made in the city, the executive said.

"The reasons most banks shy away from these loans is because of the paperwork. …

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