Venezuelan bank spins off Mercantil in Florida

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Mercantil Bank Holding in Coral Gables, Fla., has been spun off from its former parent company.

Mercantil Servicios Financieros in Venezuela disclosed in a regulatory filing Monday that it had completed the spinoff of the $8.4 billion-asset bank by distributing nearly 105 million shares of stock to shareholders.

“The company will be better-positioned, as separate, independent companies, to capture growth opportunities by operating with greater focus on their respective businesses, strategic priorities and markets,” Gustavo Vollmer, Mercantil Servicios’ chairman and CEO, said in a letter to shareholders.

“As an independent company, we expect to be able to allocate our capital more efficiently and better access the United States capital markets to expand and serve our growing markets,” Millar Wilson, Mercantil Bank’s vice chairman and CEO, said in a separate letter.

“We anticipate that this will enable us to expand our business, improve and expand our products and services, enhance our market recognition with investors and attract, retain and incent our employees with equity awards that align the interests of our employees and shareholders,” Wilson added.

The distribution was equal to an 80.1% stake in Mercantil Bank. The bank is now trading on the Nasdaq.

Raymond James was the financial adviser for the spinoff.

Mercantil Bank, which was founded in 1979, operates in South Florida, Houston and New York. It has 22 branches, $6.3 billion in deposits and $1.7 billion of assets under management.

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