Ford Motor Co. Agrees to Buy 1st Nationwide; Company to Combine Thrift with Ford Motor Credit Unit
Basch, Mark, American Banker
NEW YORK -- The Ford Motor Co. on Thursday agreed to acquire the San Francisco-based First Nationwide Financial Corp., parent of he nation's eighth largest thrift institution, for $493 million.
National Intergroup Inc., a Pittsburgh steel company, had owned 81.4% of First Nationwide's stock. The company had announced earlier this week that it was negotiating the sale of its stake of the thrift holding company, the parent of the $7.8 billion-deposit First Nationwide Savings.
Ford said it has offered to acquire all 15.4 million shares of First Nationwide, including the shares not owned by National Intergroup. The offer is for $32 per share.
"Senior management and the board of directors are enthusiastic about this acquisition," said chief executive officer Anthony M. Frank, in a statement. "It benefits shareholders, customers, employees, and our industry."
Mr. Frank said Frist Nationwide and Ford Motor Credit Co., a $24 billion-asset subsidiary of Ford, will become sister companies. First Nationwide will be a separate subsidiary of Ford Motor Co., not a subsidiary of Ford Motor Credit.
"Teaming us with Ford Motor Credit, the world's second largest consumer finance company, will enable Ford to serve the broad middle class of our country by offering financing for two of the largest purchases that most families ever make -- their home and their auto," Mr. Frank said.
"With over two million combined customers in First Nationwide Savings and First Nationwide Network, we have extensive experience in providing financial services directly to consumers, and that will enable Ford to move closer to the direct consumer market," he said. …