First Security Corp. has signed an agreement with Pacific First Financial Corp. - which acquired American Savings and Loan last month - to acquire Pacific's Utah operations.
Subject to regulatory approvals, it will be a $3.25 million cash transaction, said First Security Chairman Spencer F. Eccles.Eccles said Pacific First's (American Savings') Utah operations will be combined with First Security Bank of Utah, which currently operates 93 offices across the state.
"This will be another important acquisition for First Security," said Eccles. "It will extend our coverage of certain strategic markets in Utah . . ." The American Savings branches will be First Security's third acquisition in Utah since August, 1989.
Jerry E. Pohlman, chairman of Pacific First, said American Savings customers will find "business conducted as usual" with no disruption of service at its offices. "Normal business hours will be observed, and the offices will continue to operate as they have in the past," he said.
American Savings, which has operated branch offices in Utah and Oregon, was placed under federal conservatorship as part of the program enacted by Congress to rescue savings and loans nationwide. As conservator, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. and later the Resolution Trust Corp. conducted daily management of American Savings from February, 1989, until its acquisition by Pacific First - a subsidiary of Royal Trustco Ltd., Toronto.
"When we acquired American Savings less that two months ago," said Pohlman, "we indicated we wanted to review our options regarding this operation. Selling our Utah operations to the $6.34 billion-asset First Security will better serve local customers and employees." Pacific First employs some 160 in Utah.
Eccles said he is pleased that American Savings customers will once again be served by a locally based and managed company.
"The acquisition . . . will at least slow the trend toward increasing control of the assets and deposits of Utah financial institutions by companies based out of state," said Eccles.
First Security is the largest financial services company based in the Mountain West and is the oldest continuously operating multistate bank holding company in the United States, operating 182 bank offices in Utah, Idaho, Oregon and Wyoming.