Global Consumer Acquisition Corp., a blank-check company, said Wednesday that its shareholders had approved a deal to buy the $45 million-asset 1st Commerce Bank in North Las Vegas.
The New York special-purpose acquisition company, which is run by Hayground Cove Asset Management LLC of New York, would not disclose the vote tally. This figure is important because, even if the deal closes, any shareholders who voted against it would get their money back, reducing the company's capital.
Global raised $310 million in an initial public offering in 2007 before setting out to buy an operating business; it needed 50% of its shareholders to approve a deal.
It is buying 1st Commerce from Capitol Bancorp in Lansing, Mich. Global did not say when the deal is expected to close but said it will change its name to Western Liberty Bancorp today. It had until Nov. 27 to make a purchase or unwind its funding.
Acquisitions by blank-check companies are rare in the banking industry, and such deals have fallen apart more often than not. This week Frontier Financial Corp. in Everett, Wash., said it had canceled a deal to sell itself to SP Acquisition Holdings Inc. because the parties could not get regulatory approval in time for the buyer's Friday deadline.
Special-purpose acquisition companies are set up so their shareholders can veto deals and still make money.
In recent years, these shareholders often nixed proposed banking deals because the prices were too rich.
Community Bankers Acquisition Corp.'s June 2008 takeover of two Virginia banks is believed to be the only other example of a successful blank-check deal in the sector.