W.L. Ross & Co. is not involved in a venture to buy struggling BankUnited Financial Corp., a principal at the private-equity firm said Thursday.

John A. Kanas, the former North Fork Bancorp chairman who is a senior adviser at W.L. Ross, was responding to an American Banker story citing sources that named the fund as involved in the deal. The story, published Thursday, reported that Vanquish Capital Group LLC in Delray Beach, Fla., was arranging a deal to put BankUnited's bad assets in a structured vehicle, then buy control of the Coral Gables, Fla., thrift.

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