Back in May there were reports that Bank Leumi (TASE:LUMI) was considering selling its US arm Bank Leumi USA. Now "Bloomberg" reports that Valley National Bancorp. Is the leading candidate to buy the Israel bank, according to people familiar with the matter.
Representatives of Bank Leumi and Valley National declined to comment on the report.
Valley National Bancorp is traded on Nasdaq at a market cap of $5.3 billion and manages assets worth an estimated $42 billion. Since the start of the year, the bank's share price has risen 30%.
In May, Bank Leumi which has a market cap of NIS 38 billion, began looking for alternatives to its holdings in Bank Leumi USA, either through a sale or issuing shares in the US. In 2018, the bank hired advisors who succeeded in selling a 15% stake to two strategic investors - Endicott Group and MSD Capital LP - for $140 million, at a company valuation of $930 million.
A final decision on the future of Bank Leumi USA has yet to be made and Leumi may decide not to sell if it cannot get a good enough price.
According to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., as of December 31, 2020, Leumi USA had five branches, $7.2 billion in assets and $6 billion in deposits.
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on August 31, 2021
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