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Sunwest acquires Washington state bank

The Irvine-based company purchases Westside Community Bank from the FDIC

by Caitlin AdamsPublished: January 14, 2013 02:30 PM

Sunwest Bank has acquired the full deposits and assets of Westside Community Bank, a small institution with two locations in Washington state. The sale was made through the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC), which had been named Westside’s receiver after the bank was closed by the Washington State Department of Financial Institutions.

With offices in Puyallup and University Place, both located about 20 minutes from Tacoma, Westside had been affected by bad commercial real estate loans and was under pressure from the FDIC to boost its capital. According to the terms of the deal, Sunwest Bank is not required to cover Westside’s bad loans, which are expected to cost the FDIC an estimated $20.3 million. Westside had $97.7 million in assets and $96.5 million in deposits as of Sept. 30, 2012.

Sunwest Bank president and CEO Chris Walsh said that the company is pleased to become part of the Washington community and welcomes Westside’s former clients. “Sunwest Bank is a strong and well-capitalized community bank. Our new clients can be confident their deposits are in a stable bank with more than 43 years of experience and we look forward to serving their banking needs going forward.”

The two Westside locations were closed by regulators Friday, Jan. 11, and reopened today as branches of Sunwest Bank. Account holders will be able to continue business as usual as all checks, deposits, ATMs and debit cards will continue to be serviced following the change.

 “With a number of larger banks in the area, local residents will be comforted by the fact that Sunwest is a true community bank, providing personal service and experienced loan officers that listen and understand businesses, complimented by a practical approach to lending,” Walsh said.

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