SANTA BARBARA, CALIF. July 15, 2015 – American Riviera Bank (OTC Markets: ARBV) and The Bank of Santa Barbara jointly announced today that a definitive agreement to merge the two institutions has been signed. Once complete, the new bank will be the second largest community bank based in the City of Santa Barbara with assets of over $400 million.
The merger combines two of the leading community banks in the South Coast region and will result in an expanded footprint with branches in Santa Barbara, Montecito, and Goleta, as well as full-service Mortgage and Small Business Administration lending departments. The merger will allow the resulting bank a legal lending limit large enough to meet the needs of the community and higher than either institution previously held.
“The merger of our two local financial institutions is very powerful. Our customers and the community will now have additional branch locations, expanded product offerings, and state-of-the-art technology paired with outstanding customer service and responsive, local decision making,” said Jeff DeVine, President and CEO of American Riviera Bank.
Upon completion of the merger, which was unanimously approved by the boards of directors of both banks, Jeff DeVine will continue in his role as President and Chief Executive Officer. The Bank of Santa Barbara’s Chief Operating Officer Joanne Funari will continue in her role as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of the combined bank.
“This is extremely exciting for our community! Everyone in the Santa Barbara area will benefit from this partnership of two incredible banks coming together to form one local bank that our community can be proud of. A bank that is absolutely committed to individuals, businesses, and non-profits right here. Alone we are great, but together we are Extraordinary!” said Joanne Funari, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of The Bank of Santa Barbara.
The new Board of Directors, all of whom have deep ties to the Santa Barbara community, will be comprised of representatives from both boards. Lawrence Koppelman, the current Board Chair of American Riviera Bank, will continue in his role.
Shareholders of The Bank of Santa Barbara are expected to receive a total of 1,586,000 shares of American Riviera Bank common stock equating to an exchange ratio of 0.8546 shares of ARBV for each common share of The Bank of Santa Barbara. Based on the $9.70 closing price of ARBV as of July 14, 2015, consideration for each common share of The Bank of Santa Barbara is $8.29 and the total consideration is $15.4 million. The merger is expected to be accretive to earnings in 2016 and beyond.
The merger is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2015 and is subject to the closing conditions in the definitive agreement, including approval of regulatory agencies and the shareholders of both banks.