PORTLAND — The parent company of Camden National Bank has reached an agreement to purchase The Bank of Maine, a move that would give Camden 68 branches and make it the largest bank headquartered in the state.

Camden would would buy The Bank of Maine for equivalent of $135 million, in a combination of stock and cash.

In disclosures filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Administration, Camden reported the merger would give the bank 10.6 percent of deposits in the state, surpassing Bangor Savings parent Bangor Bancorp to have the third-most deposits in Maine and the most of any bank headquartered here.

Camden would gain 24 branches, primarily in Southern Maine and the Kennebec Valley. It would be Camden’s first foray into Cumberland and York counties.

Greg Dufour, Camden’s president and CEO, said in a telephone interview the announcement does not mean immediate changes for customers. The two banks this week will start the process of figuring out how to integrate, Dufour said, and will notify customers when they could begin using new branches or ATMs. Until the legal merger, the banks have to continue to operate separately.

Dufour said the company has not determined how it will adjust staffing through the merger. The combined company has about 737 employees, about 30 job openings and eight branches that would be within one mile of each other.

Camden’s interest in The Bank of Maine comes five years after The Bank of Maine CEO John Everets was hired to turn the bank around from crisis in 2008 and 2009.

The bank, owned by SBM Financial, had in 2009 received a cease and desist order from federal regulators, requiring the bank to make changes that included raising more capital. In 2010, it raised about $60 million in new capital and hired Everets.

Dufour said that turnaround has been “remarkable” and noted in a news release that The Bank of Maine’s health care industry and mortgage lending provide Camden “new sources of growth and diversification.”

Camden said in a presentation released Monday that The Bank of Maine has “returned to profitability” since 2011, with the cease and desist order resolved in October 2014 and about $1 billion in new and renewed loans brought in since 2011.

The Bank of Maine has made other changes to its footprint since, including selling off its Aroostook County branches to Machias Savings Bank in 2013.

The deal would place Dufour at the head of the combined bank, bringing on Everets for one year as a consultant, at about $175,000 and a $320,000 payment in exchange for an agreement that Everets would not work with Camden competitors.

The merger would give the publicly traded Camden (NASDAQ: CAC) about $3.6 billion in assets, a $2.4 billion loan portfolio and $2.6 billion in deposits. The Bank of Maine in 2014 had $806 million in assets.

Camden said it expects the deal to close in the third quarter of 2015.


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