OceanFirst to enter New York, near $10B in assets with two acquisitions

OceanFirst Financial in Toms River, N.J., has agreed to buy Two River Bancorp in Tinton Falls, N.J., and Country Bank Holding in New York.

The $8 billion-asset OceanFirst said in a press release Friday that it will pay $182.8 million in cash and stock for the $1.2 billion-asset Two River. The deal, which is expected to close in the first quarter, priced Two River at 174% of its tangible book value.

The company also agreed to buy the $783 million-asset Country Bank for $102.2 million in stock. The deal, which is also expected to close in the first quarter, priced Country Bank at 151% of its tangible book value.

OceanFirst will enter New York and near $10 billion in assets when the deals close.

Two River has 14 branches, two loan production offices, $953 million in loans and $973 million in deposits. Country Bank has five branches, $592 million in loans and $650 million in deposits.

“Two River shares a similar operating philosophy and which provides us an opportunity to further enhance our presence in New Jersey,” Christopher Maher, OceanFirst’s chairman and CEO, said in the release.

“We believe the addition of this high-performing franchise will further leverage the significant investments we have made in people, processes and technology and positively impact our earnings potential,” Maher added.

OceanFirst said the deals should be 8% accretive to its 2020 earnings. It should take less than four years for OceanFirst to earn back a projected 5% dilution to its tangible book value.

OceanFirst expects to cut about 54% of Two River’s annual noninterest expenses and a third of annual operating costs at Country Bank. The company expects to incur about $29 million in merger-related expenses tied to both acquisitions.

Piper Jaffray and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom advised OceanFirst. Boenning & Scattergood and Stevens & Lee advised Two River.

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