Boston Private Bancorp raised $8.2 million in a stock offering last week to build the company's marketing and service capability.

The company, parent of Boston Private Bank and Trust, which has $90.5 million of assets, sold nearly three million shares at $2.75 a share. About $3.6 million of the total came from a rights offering to existing shareholders and $4.6 million from the public offering.

Legg Mason Wood Walker Inc., Baltimore, managed the stock offering. There are now 5.6 million shares outstanding.

Eye on Small, Midsize Firms

Timothy L. Vail, president and CEO, said the money would be used primarily to market the company's trust products. In the past, the company has done little marketing.

The company also plans to step up lending to small and midsize business, he said.

That segment is the bread and butter for the company, which was founded in 1987.

The typical clients is a business with $2 million to $20 million in sales or individuals with $250,000 is invest or $1 million in net worth, through there are no required minimums, Mr. Vail said.

Since it first opened its doors as a Massachusetts-chartered bank insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., the firm has targeted individuals and companies that do not qualify for private banking or trust services at larger institutions.

|European-Style' Operation

Mr. Vail, who joined the company in January after stints with Fidelity Investments and Boston Safe Deposit and Trust Co., said the recent offering will be used to bolster the previous chairman's commitment to building a "European-style" private banking and trust operation.

That means relationship management and a focus on exemplary service.

The generally high quality of trust products today means that institutions can differentiate themselves only through superior services, he added.

Subscribe Now

Access to authoritative analysis and perspective and our data-driven report series.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.