Magazine article American Banker

New Name and Big Plans for First Maryland Corp

Magazine article American Banker

New Name and Big Plans for First Maryland Corp

Article excerpt

Allied Irish Bank's U.S. banking company is ditching its state-related name and planning a multistate expansion drive.

On June 28, First Maryland Corp. will become Allfirst Financial Inc., a combination of Allied and First National. And First Maryland's branches, which until recently operated under seven bank charters, will be Allfirst Bank branches.

Three hundred branches in southern Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, the District of Columbia, and northern Virginia will be affected.

The seven banks-First National Bank of Maryland and six smaller institutions-have already been merged into a single charter under a temporary name.

"This is a statement recognizing that First Maryland Bancorp is a regional banking company that operates in multiple marketplaces," said Frank P. Bramble, chief executive.

The name change, including replacement of all the signs, will cost $8 million to $12 million, First Maryland said.

The company also unveiled a new logo-an open door with light coming inand new corporate colors: purple and orange.

First Maryland has $18.3 billion of assets; Dublin-based Allied Irish has $63 billion in all.

Mr. Bramble said First Maryland is "very interested" in buying banks to fill in holes in its existing markets, as well as expanding into West Virginia to the west, Virginia to the south, and New Jersey to the north.

"We clearly have an active acquisition strategy," he said. "It is our stated intention over time for Allfirst to be in the top three in all of the markets in our region. …

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