ConnectOne buying Greater Hudson Bank in $76.3M deal

New York’s Greater Hudson Bank will become part of ConnectOne Bank under a $76.3 million merger deal announced Thursday.

Englewood Cliffs-based ConnectOne Bancorp Inc., parent of ConnectOne, and Greater Hudson Bank have reached a definitive agreement for an all-stock transaction, helping grow ConnectOne’s operations in New York state.

“This transaction reflects a financially attractive, compelling expansion opportunity to combine with a similarly minded, commercially focused lender operating within the 75-mile radius of New York City where ConnectOne has excelled,” ConnectOne Chairman and CEO Frank Sorrentino said in a prepared statement. “It also strongly supports our stated growth strategy, which includes opportunistic growth through M&A, to enhance our desirable and valuable franchise.”

Under the terms of the agreement, each outstanding share of Greater Hudson common stock will be exchanged for 0.245 of a share of ConnectOne common stock. The deal is valued at $76.3 million, based upon ConnectOne’s closing stock price as of Wednesday.

ConnectOne, which said it recently established New York operations, said the deal will expedite growth plans in Rockland, Orange and Westchester counties with a presence in the Hudson Valley region. ConnectOne also said the deal will extend its commercial and industrial lending capabilities, add experienced bankers and establish a Small Business Administration line of business.

“Greater Hudson is a strong strategic fit for ConnectOne, and allows the company to establish scale in the Hudson Valley region, add respected, talented bankers, establish an SBA line of business and further enhance our C&I lending capabilities,” Sorrentino said.

Both banks’ boards of directors have unanimously approved the transaction. It is expected to close early in the first quarter of 2019, pending customary approvals and conditions.

Piper Jaffray & Co. was ConnectOne’s financial adviser, while Windels Marx Lane & Mittendorf was its legal counsel. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods Inc., a Stifel company, was Greater Hudson’s financial adviser and Hogan Lovells US LLP was its legal counsel.