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NBT Bank to acquire Alliance

Officials expecting no immediate effect on local branches

October 9, 2012
By LEVI PASCHER , The Leader Herald

GLOVERSVILLE - A merger between NBT Bank and Alliance Financial will have no immediate effect on the local NBT branches, but it may result in additional ATM locations, an NBT representative said.

"The greatest impact to any of our customers outside the Syracuse area is the banks will now have a larger branch network ultimately that they will have access to because of this merger," said Florence Doller, senior vice president of marketing and corporate communications for NBT. "This is a great fit for us because it really extends our market to the west around Syracuse. It is great news for our current customers because they will have a wider network of branches and more ATM locations."

Under the merger, announced Monday, NBT Bancorp plans to buy Alliance Financial Corp., a smaller competitor of NBT, for about $233 million in stock.

For NBT, the purchase represents the chance to secure a foothold in the "demographically attractive" New York counties of Cortland, Madison, Oneida, Onondaga and Oswego, a news release said.

After the completion of the merger, all of the Alliance Bank offices will become NBT Bank locations and the NBT board will be expanded to include two other current members of the Alliance Board, the news release said.

Doller said it's too early to know if the change will bring new services or programs to NBT customers.

"Other than more ATM locations, this will have no impact on existing bank branches because they are already established and set up in our existing markets," Doller said. "This should have no impact to bank employment at this time as well."

NBT Bancorp, based in Norwich, Chenango County, has several bank branches in the area, including two locations in Gloversville, four in Amsterdam and one in Johnstown, Fonda, Fort Plain, Canajoharie and St. Johnsville.

Alliance, a nationally chartered community bank with 28 locations in central New York, has no bank branches in Fulton, Montgomery or Hamilton counties.

NBT is a nationally chartered community bank with more than 135 banking locations in five states, including New York, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Massachusetts and New Hampshire, the news release said.

The merger is expected to close in the second quarter of 2013. The merger is subject to customary closing conditions, including receipt of regulatory approvals and approvals by NBT and Alliance stockholders.

The merger will provide NBT with the addition of $1.4 billion in assets, including $890 million in net loans held for investment, and $1.1 billion in deposits.

According to the release, both banks trace their roots in central New York for more than 150 years.

"This agreement represents an exciting opportunity for our banks to come together and leverage our shared commitment to our customers and communities, creating an even stronger locally focused bank to serve central New York and thereby enhance stockholder value," NBT President and CEO Martin Dietrich said in the news release.

He said the extension into the greater Syracuse area is a complement to NBT Bank's existing network of 97 branches and banking locations in upstate New York.

Under the terms of the agreement, each outstanding share of Alliance common stock will be converted into the right to receive 2.1779 shares of NBT common stock upon completion.

According to the news release, the transaction is valued at $48 per Alliance share based on NBT's average closing stock price of $22.04 for the five-day trading period ending Oct. 5.



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