Wednesday AM August 12th, 2009

Houston-based Sterling Bank says its pending acquisition of first bank branches will strengthen its presence here and in Dallas. Jack Williams reports.

Sterling, which celebrates its 35th anniversary today, will acquire 19 of the Missouri-chartered First Bank branches and $500 million in deposits. The purchase will increase Sterling Bank’s presence from 30 to 41 branches here in Houston. Eight new branches will be added to the Dallas market. Downey Bridgewater is Chairman, president and CEO of Sterling  Bank.

“The acquisition of the First Bank branches, deposits and a few loans was to add to our footprint, both in Houston and in Dallas. It adds significant core deposits and some very high quality performing loans to our balance sheet. Ultimately it will add additional earnings immediately in 2010 and beyond.” 
The deal should be complete by late this year. Bridgewater says the majority of First Bank’s employees will be retained.