Under the terms of the agreement, Merchants Financial Group will acquire all of the outstanding stock of The First National Bank of Northfield in an all cash transaction. The amount of the sale was not disclosed.
“We are thrilled with the opportunity to be joining the Northfield community and continuing The First National Bank’s tradition of high-quality customer service and community involvement,” said Gregory M. Evans, Merchants president and CEO. “We are also humbled by the stewardship responsibility that comes with ensuring First National’s legacy with its customers and in the community will continue to be nurtured and never forgotten.”
Both First National Bank and Merchants Bank have rich histories of service in their respective communities in southeastern Minnesota. First National was chartered in Northfield in 1873, and Merchants’ history began in Winona in 1875.
“There are tremendous challenges today for smaller community banks, so we made the strategic decision to find the right partner to provide broader financial services and technology tools that will be expected by our customers well into the future,” said David Shumway, CEO for First National Bank of Northfield. “We know Merchants is the right partner, and our due diligence identified Merchants as an organization absolute in its commitment to shared values of community leadership and strong service culture.”
The First National Bank of Northfield has $207 million in assets, $157 million in loans (plus an additional $60 million in sold loan participations) and $183 million in deposits. Internationally recognized as the bank that defeated Jesse James in 1876, First National Bank operates out of two branches in Northfield and a loan production office in Minneapolis.
The agreement is subject to regulatory agency approval, but it is fully expected that the deal will close before year-end 2019.
Merchants Bank is a full-service community bank with 21 branches in southeastern Minnesota and west-central Wisconsin. The bank has more than $1.76 billion in assets.