Seacoast Bank acquires Legacy Bank of Florida

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STUART – The Stuart-based Seacoast Bank will buy out Legacy Bank of Florida, expanding its presence in Palm Beach and Broward counties and ending a 14-month pandemic-related hiatus in its aggressive acquisition efforts, has she announced this week.

Legacy Bank, which operates five branches in both counties, had deposits of around $ 432 million and loans of $ 482 million as of Dec.31.

“Legacy Bank of Florida is a customer-focused franchise with an exceptional reputation for service excellence and strong customer relationships in this important market,” said Seacoast President and CEO Charles “Chuck Shaffer. “We see a great opportunity in complementing its strengths with those of Seacoast. innovation and breadth of our offerings to increase our presence and expand our position in South Florida. ”

Following: Seacoast Bank acquires third bank in Tampa Bay area

The acquisition is Seacoast’s first major initiative since Shaffer was promoted to CEO in early January and Dennis Hudson III, who led Seacoast for 28 years, became executive chairman of the board.

“With no real history to show during the pandemic,” Shaffer said, Seacoast “paused” acquisition plans to “navigate cautiously” through the worst of the crisis.

Seacoast, which has seen its share price more than double since Sept. 25 to about $ 36 per share, said net income of $ 77.8 million for 2020, about 21.1% lower than in 2019, mainly due to the adoption of a new industry standard to increase credit reserves.

While the bank remains “cautious and disciplined,” Shaffer said Florida’s economy “is doing incredibly well.”

He cited falling unemployment rates and accelerating migration – mainly of wealthy individuals and many business relocations – to the Treasure Coast from the northeast as key factors “significantly supporting economic growth. “.

Seacoast previously expanded into Palm Beach and Broward counties with the acquisitions of Grand Bankshares in 2015, Palm Beach Community Bank in 2017, First Green Bancorp in 2018, and First Bank of the Palm Beaches, which it announced in November 2019 and completed in March 2020.

Following: Dennis Hudson becomes Executive Chairman of Seacoast Bank; Shaffer appointed president

Prior to this week’s Legacy Bank announcement, Seacoast’s latest acquisition was St. Petersburg-based Freedom Bank, announced in January 2020 and completed in August.

Seacoast spent approximately $ 63.6 million to acquire the First Bank of the Palm Beaches and the Freedom Banks, whose combined assets were roughly equal to the assets of Legacy Bank. The Legacy Bank deal is valued at $ 102.2 million.

“Every transaction is different, depending on a multitude of factors including timing, historical performance and the macroeconomic environment,” Shaffer said.

The Legacy Bank deal, which is expected to be finalized in the third quarter of 2021, will make Seacoast the largest community or state bank in Palm Beach County and the 12th overall in terms of deposit market share.

It has long held the largest market share in Martin County, and that dominance has increased to 29.8% from 26.4% of the deposit market as of June 30, according to the latest Federal Deposit Insurance annual report. Corp.

Boosted by hundreds of millions of dollars in federal payroll protection program loan funds deposited last spring in client accounts, Seacoast also came in at the top of the Treasure Coast in terms of deposit market share. for the first time in 20 years.

Seacoast added $ 562.5 million in deposits on the Treasure Coast, its largest annual increase in dollars and percentages (25.8%), bringing its total deposits in the region to $ 2.73 billion as of June 30 , according to the FDIC.

This increased Seacoast’s share of total bank deposits on the Treasure Coast to 16.8% from 15.4% a year earlier, overtaking Bank of America, which held number one for four years.

Paul Ivice is a local freelance writer. If you like articles like this and other TCPalm covers of Treasure Coast news, support our journalism and subscribe now.

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