Magazine article American Banker

CertusBank in S.C. to Sell Small Business Finance Operations

Magazine article American Banker

CertusBank in S.C. to Sell Small Business Finance Operations

Article excerpt

Byline: Paul Davis

CertusHoldings in Greenville, S.C., has agreed to sell its small business finance unit to BankUnited in Miami Lakes, Fla.

The $19.2 billion-asset BankUnited will also acquire a $203 million loan portfolio tied to the unit, which originates, sells and services loans under the Small Business Administration's 7(a) and CDC/504 programs. The unit also lends under two Department of Agriculture programs.

BankUnited will pay a $20 million premium to the tangible net asset value of the acquired assets and assumed liabilities, subject to adjustment. The deal, which is expected to close in the second quarter, should be accretive to BankUnited's earnings in the first year; it should take less than two years to earn back any expected tangible book value dilution.

"This transaction will significantly improve CertusBank's liquidity and capital positions and allow us to focus our attention on returning to a more traditional community banking structure," John Poelker, Certus' chairman, president and chief executive, said in a press release Monday. "The small business finance unit has consistently been a strong performer ... and I'm confident our SBF teammates will continue to excel as they make the transition to BankUnited."

"The team's track record and reputation have been impressive and we believe they are a complementary fit to our dynamic and growing organization," John Kanas, BankUnited's chairman, president and chief executive, said. …

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