Talmer Bancorp has agreed to buy and recapitalize First Place Bank in Warren, Ohio, in a deal that will work its way through the bankruptcy process.
Talmer, which is based in Troy, Mich., will pay $45 million for First Place Bank's stock and then infuse more than $200 million in capital into the bank "to satisfy regulatory capital requirements, strengthen the bank's capital structure, and support lending activity," the companies said in a press release Monday.
First Place Financial (FPFC), the $2.8 billion-asset holding company for First Place Bank, on Monday filed a voluntary Chapter 11 petition in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware. Other qualified bidders will have an opportunity to submit competing bids for the bank, though they would also be required to recapitalize the bank. First Place Bank was not included in Chapter 11 filing.
"First Place Bank has faced significant issues for a number of years, and today's agreement … will enable us to meet the capital requirements set out by our regulator in July 2011," Samuel
Roth, First Place Financial's chairman, said in the release. "Partnering with Talmer is a long-term solution."
The companies said they expect to complete the process in 60 to 90 days.
First Place has not published its quarterly financial results in two years and had been in the midst of an internal review that was set to force it to restate earnings going back to 2008. The company had said that the restatement, which was focusing on its methodology for accounting for loan losses, would have a "material adverse effect" on capital levels. (Its thrift unit reported a loss of $7.7 million last year and a loss of $41 million in 2011, according to Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. data, but those figures could change pending the restatement.)
In June, First Place Financial hired longtime banking executive Louis Dunham to help lead its recovery, naming him interim president and chief executive. Dunham had owned a bank consulting firm, CAMELSolutions of Lakeville, Pa., and had previously been a chief executive at community banks in Illinois and Florida.
The $2.2 billion-asset Talmer is backed by capital from W.L. Ross & Co. and has grown by buying a number of failed banks in states such as Michigan and Wisconsin.