Small local bank to be acquired by mysterious buyer

New Horizon Bank’s location at 1870 Stone Ridge Commercial Drive in Powhatan. (BizSense file photo by Roxanne Salerno)

The Richmond region’s smallest bank has found a suitor, although details about the buyer and its intentions are scant.

New Horizon Bank, an $88 million single-branch institution based in Powhatan, on Friday announced it is being acquired by CSBH LLC, an entity based in New York City, according to a press release.

Little is known about CSBH or what it has planned for New Horizon.

New Horizon CEO Brian Grizzard deferred comment to Doug Mitchell, who is listed in a joint press release from the companies as manager of CSBH, described as an entity with a single member.

Mitchell could not be reached for comment Friday afternoon. His email address includes a handle for a “ClearStreetBank.com,” although no information about any such bank could be found by press time.

The deal does not appear to be a typical merger or acquisition involving two regional banking peers joining forces.

The release’s limited details suggest that perhaps CSBH is a new bank acquiring New Horizon largely for its national bank charter. That would allow the company to open a bank without having to go through the chartering process from scratch.

The last local bank to go the route of charter poaching was Xenith Bank, which launched in 2009 by acquiring the charter of a small bank in Suffolk. Xenith has since been acquired by Richmond-based Atlantic Union Bank.

Grizzard did not say whether the deal is related to New Horizon’s charter. He commented only vaguely through prepared statements in the press release.

“In addition to increased capital, enhanced technology and other banking services that will improve our product offerings, by partnering with CSBH, our customers will still see familiar faces and know that we will maintain the relationships that have been built over the years,” Grizzard said in the release.

New Horizon’s announcement also suggests that the deal could involve other interests elsewhere in Virginia, as the press release was sent to media outlets in Bristol, Norton and Farmville, in addition to Richmond.

The deal, which has already been approved by the New Horizon board, calls for CSBH to pay $25.50 in cash per share of New Horizon stock. New Horizon is a closely held bank, with stock that’s publicly traded but not on any formal exchange.

The bank has around 450,000 shares outstanding, which pegs the value of the deal at around $11.5 million. Its shareholders must still approve the deal, which is targeted for closure later this year.

New Horizon is advised in the deal by Feldman Financial Advisors and the Buckley law firm. CSBH was represented by the law firm Baker Donelson.

New Horizon was founded in Powhatan in 2009, fueled by an initial $9 million capital raise from a group led by Jimmy Keller, who was the bank’s CEO until 2017.

Grizzard took over as CEO last year, replacing Tommy Bourque, who had been on the job for less than two years.

Leave a Reply

avatar
  Subscribe  
Notify of