The Law Office of Lynnette Ariathurai A Professional Corporation

Banking business merger will affect California bank locations

Banking is an important industry for the local and national economy. Recently, there have been various banking firms that have moved forward with mergers and acquisitions that could have an effect on the banking industry in California. One recent string of business merger activity will affect various banking locations across California.

Umpqua Holdings Corporation is set to finalize a merger with Sterling Financial Corp., which owns numerous banking locations in California. Sterling is the parent company of Argent Bank. In November 2012, Umpqua had also acquired Novato's Circle Bank. Umpqua's recent business moves will allow the company to penetrate the California market, which the company had largely left untouched in the past.

Argent Bank locations and Sterling Bank branches will be renamed and rebranded as Umpqua in about two months. Umpqua's purchase of Sterling was valued at about $2 billion. The newly merged company will have more than $20 billion in assets and almost 400 branch locations in several states throughout the country. Before the recent acquisition, Umpqua owned and operated 20 branch locations as well as an office dedicated to commercial banking.

Just like any other business merger in California, Umpqua needs to ensure that it goes through the correct legal channels in order to complete the transaction. This means making sure the correct legal documents are submitted to the proper regulating agencies. Also, legal contracts and agreements regulating the terms of the merger will also need to be drafted to legitimize the merger. Therefore, knowledge of applicable laws is essential.

Source: North Bay Business Journal, "Umpqua charts path after Sterling merger", Eric Gneckow, April 18, 2014

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