First Independent Bank has notified employees whose jobs will be eliminated after the Vancouver, Wash., bank is sold to Sterling Financial Corp. of Spokane, Wash.

The $791.9 million-asset First Independent, the unit of First Independent Investment Group, said that “less than 8%” of its roughly 245 employees will lose their jobs or retire when the acquisition is closed on Feb. 29, The Columbian in Vancouver, Wash., reported in its online edition Friday. Employees were told on Thursday, the report said.

More layoffs are expected as the conversion of First Independent’s operations into Sterling will continue into July, according to The Columbian.

Under the deal announced in November, Sterling’s bank, Sterling Savings Bank, will take on certain assets and liabilities, including all deposits, and the banking operations of First Independent. First Independent Investment Group will retain about $49 million in loans and $34 million in other assets.

The $9.2 billion-asset Sterling will pay an initial premium of $8 million plus the net value of the acquired assets and liabilities at closing. Sterling may pay up to an additional $17 million over the next year and a half based on the performance of the acquired loans and any reductions in core deposits and wealth management income.

Sterling has 178 branches throughout Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and California. First Independent has 14 branches in Washington and two in Portland, Ore.

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