Valley National bulks up in N.J. with Oritani purchase

Valley National Bancorp in Wayne, N.J., has agreed to buy Oritani Financial in Township of Washington, N.J.

The $32.5 billion-asset Valley said in a press release Wednesday that it will pay $740 million in stock for the $4.1 billion-asset Oritani. The deal, which is expected to close in the fourth quarter, priced Oritani at 140% of its tangible book value.

Oritani is a former mutual bank that has 26 branches, $3.5 billion in loans and $2.9 billion in deposits. The deal will double Valley’s market share in New Jersey’s Bergen County.

“Oritani’s conservative credit culture, combined with their customer focus should mesh seamlessly with that of Valley and our vision forward,” Ira Robbins, Valley's president and CEO, said in the release.

“This capital-enriching transaction will enable Valley to continue to focus on improving the growth profile throughout its entire franchise, while providing enhanced products, services and delivery channels to Oritani’s existing customer base,” Robbins added.

Ira Robbins, promoted to CEO at Valley National in first week of November 2017

Kevin Lynch, Oritani’s chairman, president and CEO, will join Valley’s board.

In conjunction with the deal’s closing, Valley plans on restructuring about $635 million of higher-cost Federal Home Loan Bank borrowings.

Valley said it expects the acquisition and the debt restructuring will be immediately neutral to slightly accretive to earnings per share and tangible book value. The moves should increase Valley’s Tier 1 common equity by more than 50 basis points.

Valley said it plans to cut about half of Oritani’s annual noninterest expense, or $22 million. Every Oritani branch is within three miles of another Oritani branch or an existing Valley location.

Valley said it expects to incur $39 million in merger-related charges.

J.P. Morgan Securities and Day Pitney advised Valley. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods and Luse Gorman advised Oritani.

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