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Granada Hills-Based Bank to Be Acquired

Boston Private Financial says the deal will help it expand its wealth management business in Southern California.

July 11, 2003|From Bloomberg News

Boston Private Financial Holdings Inc. agreed Thursday to buy First State Bancorp, which owns First State Bank of California, for about $26.6 million in cash and stock to expand in the Los Angeles area.

Boston Private will pay 15% of the transaction in cash and 85% in stock, initially valued at about $18.38 a share, the Boston-based firm said in a statement after markets closed. That's a 12% premium to First Bank's closing share price Thursday of $16.35 in over-the-counter trading.

Boston Private plans to expand its wealth management business in Southern California by acquiring Granada Hills-based First State, which also has offices in the Burbank and Rancho Cucamonga.

Each share of First State stock will be converted into a combination of $2.76 cash and 0.7547 share of Boston Private common stock.

Boston Private's stock closed at $21.96, down 4 cents, on Nasdaq. Its shares have risen 15% in the last year.

The acquisition would boost Boston Private's earnings immediately, the company said. Boston Private manages about $6.7 billion in client assets and has total assets of about $1.85 billion; First State has assets of about $150 million.

Boston Private President and Chief Executive Walter Pressey didn't immediately return a voicemail.

First Bank, which has 41 employees, will keep its name. President and Chief Executive Richard Taylor also didn't return a call.

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