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Western Alliance Bancorporation to Acquire Western Liberty Bancorp

 

Aug 24 - Western Alliance Bancorporation (NYSE:WAL) and Western Liberty Bancorp (NASDAQ:WLBC) have signed a definitive agreement pursuant to which Western Alliance Bancorporation will acquire Western Liberty Bancorp. Immediately following the completion of the acquisition, Western Liberty’s principal operating subsidiary, Service1st Bank of Nevada, will merge with and into Bank of Nevada, a wholly owned subsidiary of Western Alliance Bancorporation.

The agreement provides that each shareholder of Western Liberty Bancorp may elect to receive either $4.02 in cash or 0.4341 of a share of Western Alliance Bancorporation for each Western Liberty share owned (based on existing shares of Western Liberty stock outstanding as of the date hereof and assuming the conversion of outstanding restricted stock units), subject to certain collar and proration provisions. The exchange is expected to be tax free, to the extent shareholders receive shares of Western Alliance Bancorporation. In aggregate, the transaction is valued at approximately $55 million.

Robert Sarver, chairman and CEO of Western Alliance Bancorporation, commented, “This transaction further strengthens our capital position, increases our core deposits, and enables us to further leverage our existing infrastructure in Las Vegas. We expect the transaction to be immediately accretive to our tangible book value.”

Bruce Hendricks, CEO of Bank of Nevada, added, “With significant customer overlap between Bank of Nevada and Service1st Bank, we anticipate quickly integrating the two institutions, giving added convenience and services to clients of Service1st.”

“By joining a strong, service-oriented regional banking franchise, we add greater lending capacity for our customers and new opportunities for growth for the bank. I am confident that both our organizations will benefit from this combination,” said William Martin, CEO of Western Liberty Bancorp. “As we considered all of our strategic growth options, it became clear that choosing to partner with Western Alliance can provide the greatest benefits and opportunities for our stockholders, employees, customers, and the communities we serve.”

This transaction has been approved by the board of directors of each company and is subject to certain terms and conditions, including approval by stockholders of Western Liberty Bancorp and banking regulatory authorities. It is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter 2012.

About Western Alliance Bancorporation
With $7.2 billion in assets, Western Alliance Bancorporation is the parent company of Bank of Nevada, Western Alliance Bank doing business as Alliance Bank of Arizona and First Independent Bank, Torrey Pines Bank and Shine Investment Advisory Services. These dynamic organizations provide a broad array of deposit and credit services to clients in Nevada, Arizona and California, and investment services in Colorado. Staffed with experienced financial professionals, these organizations deliver a broader product array and larger credit capacity than community banks, yet are empowered to be more responsive to customers' needs than larger institutions. Additional investor information can be accessed on the Investor Relations page of the company's website, www.westernalliancebancorp.com.

About Western Liberty Bancorp
With $199 million in assets, Western Liberty Bancorp is a Nevada bank holding company which conducts operations through Service1st Bank of Nevada, its wholly owned banking subsidiary, and Las Vegas Sunset Properties. Service1st Bank operates as a traditional community bank and provides a full range of deposit, lending and other banking services to locally-owned businesses, professional firms, individuals and other customers from its headquarters and two retail banking facilities located in the greater Las Vegas area. Services provided include basic commercial and consumer depository services, commercial working capital and equipment loans, commercial real estate loans, and other traditional commercial banking services. Primarily all of the bank’s business is generated in the Nevada market.

 


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