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COUNTYWIDE FOCUS

Bank to Offer Stock to Its Shareholders

October 03, 1994|MARY F. POLS

Ventura County National Bank, under pressure by federal regulators to increase its capital levels, will offer $5 million in stock for sale to its shareholders, bank officials have said.

President and Chief Executive Officer Richard Cupp said the bank is issuing new stock to raise its capital levels.

The bank had been given until the end of September to boost its capital after a review by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency earlier this year. A string of bad real estate loans and consistent quarterly losses prompted the review.

Cupp said he is confident regulators will accept the new plan to raise capital.

"We don't expect any adverse impact from the OCC at all," he said.

The price and terms of the stock sale have not been decided, pending approval by federal regulators.

An earlier attempt to raise capital by selling the bank's Orange County-based subsidiary, Frontier Bank, was dropped when the bank's officers and the prospective purchaser could not agree on a price.

VCNB has assets of about $294 million. If the final sale of Bank of A. Levy to First Interstate goes through, VCNB will become Ventura County's largest locally owned bank.

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