Credit union in Michigan to buy Florida bank in seventh such deal of 2022

DFCU Financial plans to enter the Florida market through a bank acquisition.

The Dearborn, Michigan-based credit union said Thursday that it has agreed to acquire $689 million-asset First Citrus Bank, a subsidiary of Tampa, Florida-based First Citrus Bancorporation, in an all-cash transaction.

Shareholders of FCB will receive $47.75 in cash for each share owned, but the full purchase price was not disclosed in the credit union’s press release. 

Ryan Goldberg, president and CEO of the $6.4 billion-asset DFCU, said the acquisition of First Citrus will represent a significant increase in the credit union’s commercial lending presence and expertise. 

“CEO Jack Barrett’s leadership has fostered a customer-centric culture that closely aligns with DFCU’s core values,” he said in the press release.

Barrett will become the credit union’s Florida market president after the deal is closed, and the entire management team of First Citrus will join DFCU.

“We’re delighted that DFCU has chosen Tampa Bay as their Florida headquarters and honored that they have entrusted our executive team to build upon their 72-year history,” Barrett said in the press release. ”This merger is not only a win for our shareholders, it’s a win for our associates, clients, Tampa Bay and frankly the state of Florida.”

The deal marks the seventh transaction announced this year in which a credit union plans to buy a bank. There were 13 such deals announced last year.

Attorney Mike Bell of Honigman, who represented DFCU in the deal, said he is seeing interest in credit union acquisitions across the board from all types and kinds of small banks.  

“The activity levels remain high and I expect them to stay that way for the near future,” he said.

DFCU intends to keep all of FCB’s branches open following completion of the transaction, which is expected to close in the fourth quarter. At that point, DFCU will have 33 branches.

DFCU was advised by Donnelly Penman and Partners and the law firm Honigman LLP. FCB was advised by Hovde Group LLC and the law firm Smith Mackinnon PA.

DFCU earned $64.6 million in 2021 according to call report data from the National Credit Union Administration.

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