Sunday, July 22, 2007

Hit #174 (Greater Bay Bancorp)

One of Bay Area's last independent regional banks, Greater Bay Bancorp (GBBK), is being bought by Wells Fargo for $1.5 billion in a cash & stock transaction. The offer, amounting to around $28.5/share, translates into a gain of 15.24% over my average cost of $24.73.

I have mentioned Greater Bay in the past, when the company put itself up for sale and in another post on bank mergers.

With this, the remaining two Bay Area banks, Bridge Bank (BBNK) and Silicon Valley Bank (SIVB), should naturally become targets. I do not own either of them, and would be looking for a good entry point. Another bank with a large Bay Area operation, First Republic Bank (FRC), is being acquired by Merrill Lynch in a transaction that involved a large premium.

Identifying smaller banks that are takeover targets is more fun than one imagines. See earlier posts on going after a particular buyer (Who is next for Rabobank) and profiting from road-trips (Feeling Arizona and Revisiting Arizona).

The latest subprime related scare has created a few buying opportunities in high quality and well-managed banks. I have been buying or watching a number of them. An incomplete watchlist is here:
  • PrivateBancorp (PVTB)
  • Bryn Mawr Trust (BMTC)
  • Trustmark (TRMK)
  • Renesant (RNST)
  • UnionBanCal (UB)
  • Umpqua Holdings (UMPQ)
  • People's United Financial (PBCT)
  • Virginia Commerce Bancorp (VCBI)
  • Severn Bancorp (SVBI)
  • Farmer's Capital Bank (FFKT)
  • New York Community Bancorp (NYB)
  • Capital Bancorp (CBC)
  • KeyCorp (KEY)
  • National City (NCC)
  • Heritage Oaks Bancorp (HEOP)
  • Capital City Bank (CCBG)
  • Vineyard National Bancorp (VNBC)
  • PFF Bancorp (PFB)
  • Huntington Bancshares (HBAN)
  • Popular Inc. (BPOP)
  • Old National Bancorp (ONB)
  • Bank of Florida (BOFL)
  • Pacific Valley Bank(PVBK)
  • Hampton Roads Bankshares (HMPR)
  • Texas Capital Bancshares (TCBI)
  • Colonial Bancgroup (CNB)
  • Lakeland Bancorp (LBAI)
  • LNB Bancorp (LNBB)
  • Bank of Granite (GRAN)
  • German American Bancorp (GABC)

Previous hit - Bisys (#173)


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