First Commonwealth to acquire 14 Santander branches

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Santander Bank is selling 14 branches to First Commonwealth Bank, allowing the western Pennsylvania bank to expand its reach in central areas of the state.

The branches are located in State College, Lock Haven, Williamsport and Lewisburg and have roughly $525 million in deposits and $120 million in retail and business loans as of March 31, according to a news release.

A representative from First Commonwealth Bank could not be reached for comment. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“The contiguous expansion of our footprint into these new towns, which have complementary demographics and culture to our core western Pennsylvania markets, makes perfect sense for us,” T. Michael Price, CEO of First Commonwealth, said in the release.

“The deposits we are acquiring with these branches provide low-cost stable funding that will immediately improve our profitability and, more importantly, allow us to continue the steady pace of our loan growth in the face of a competitive deposit market,” Price said.

The acquisition will allow First Commonwealth to expand its Pennsylvania footprint by adding approximately 22,000 retail and small business households, according to the release.

According to the release, the transaction is subject to regulatory approval and is expected to close in the third quarter of 2019.

First Commonwealth Financial Corp., the parent company of First Commonwealth Bank, is headquartered in Indiana, Pennsylvania. First operates 137 branches in 22 counties throughout western and central Pennsylvania and throughout Ohio. Additionally, it has corporate banking centers in Pittsburgh, as well as in Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio. It has assets of nearly $8 billion.

The company also operates mortgage offices in Wexford, Pennsylvania, and in Hudson and Dublin, Ohio.

Santander Bank is based in Boston, Massachusetts.