Bridgeport, Conn.-based People's United Financial has just entered the Long Island market in a big way, agreeing on Thursday to buy beleaguered Smithtown Bancorp for $60 million in cash and stock.
It's a stunning end for Smithtown, which as recently as two years ago touted an aggressive branch expansion strategy that would one day blanket Long Island. The bank also had designs on adding locations in Manhattan and, perhaps, Brooklyn.
But bad loans battered the company's stock, which traded at $3.79 this afternoon, far below the 52-week high of $14.23.
As of March 31, Smithtown, which has a branch in Huntington, had assets of $2.4 billion, with 30 branches, 29 on Long Island. The 30th was in New York City.
People's United on Thursday also said it has agreed to acquire North Andover, Mass.-based RiverBank, a subsidiary of LSB Corp. RiverBank has seven branches, five of which are in greater Boston. The other two are in southern New Hampshire.
People's has about 300 branches.
The Smithtown purchase augments "our leading market presence in Fairfield County and our growing franchise in Westchester County," said Jack Barnes, interim chief executive officer of People's, in a press release.
The deal is slated to close by the fourth quarter.
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