First Mariner acquisition of Glen Burnie bank OK'd Fed approves move into Anne Arundel


September 30, 1998|By Bill Atkinson | Bill Atkinson,SUN STAFF

The Federal Reserve Board yesterday approved First Mariner Bancorp's filing to acquire up to 100 percent of Glen Burnie Bancorp, after nearly a year of bitter fighting between the two companies.

The fast-growing First Mariner, which has $350 million in assets and 22 branches, will likely move within the next 15 days to acquire 19 percent of Glen Burnie Bancorp from a large #i shareholder, said Frank Bonaventure, an attorney representing First Mariner.

A Glen Burnie Bancorp acquisition would increase First Mariner's assets by 65 percent and would strengthen its foothold in Anne Arundel County.

Edwin F. Hale Sr., the Baltimore shipping executive and First Mariner's chairman, was pleased with the Fed's decision.

"I didn't think there would be any doubt that it would be approved," he said. "It just took a long time."

Hale said he wants to set up a meeting with Glen Burnie Bancorp executives in coming weeks. When asked if he would encourage Glen Burnie Bancorp's managers to sell out, Hale said, "I am not sure what we are going to do. We still would like to get deeper into Anne Arundel County. This would really fortify our position."

Glen Burnie Bancorp has $225 million in assets and its executives have resisted Hale's efforts by installing a "poison pill," provisions that make it more difficult to acquire the bank in a hostile takeover. The executives have also fought First Mariner's effort with several lawsuits.

Pub Date: 9/30/98

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