Mercantile completes Union National acquisition

$70 million deal adds clout in Carroll

Maryland banks

July 15, 2000|By Bill Atkinson | Bill Atkinson,SUN STAFF

Mercantile Bankshares Corp. said yesterday that it completed its acquisition of Union National Bancorp of Westminster in a transaction valued at about $70 million.

The Baltimore-based Mercantile, which is the largest independently owned banking company in the state with $8 billion in assets, merged Union National Bank into Westminster Bank and Trust Co., a Mercantile affiliate.

The deal gives Mercantile more muscle in the fast-growing Carroll County market, adding 10 branches and $310 million in assets.

"It better positions us to compete in that market," said Terry Troupe, chief financial officer and treasurer of Mercantile. "There is tremendous growth occurring. It is a really good banking market."

Combined, the banks have 20 branches, $557 million in assets and about 225 employees. Union National's name will change to Westminster Union Bank.

Westminster's local banks have been gobbled up by much larger institutions. BB&T Corp., a super regional banking company-based in Winston-Salem, N.C., bought Carroll County Bank & Trust Co. last year.

"The fact that the local dominating players have all been taken over actually makes Mercantile seem more local than anybody else," said Jon Holtaway, principal at Danielson Associates Inc., a Rockville-based bank-consulting firm.

Shares of Mercantile rose 18.75 cents to $31.875 yesterday.

With the acquisition, Mercantile gains the largest share of deposits in Westminster, with 32 percent of the market, which represents $242 million, according to Danielson's latest figures, dated June 1999. The numbers have been adjusted for acquisitions.

BB&T ranks second with 29 percent of the deposits, or $221 million, and Frederick-based F&M Bancorp has 10 percent, or $77 million.

Shareholders of Union National Bancorp, the parent company of Union National Bank, will receive 1.15 shares of Mercantile common stock in exchange for each share of Union National.

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