updated 3/25/2011 7:46:27 PM ET 2011-03-25T23:46:27

LAKE FOREST, Ill., March 25, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Wintrust Financial Corporation ("Wintrust") (Nasdaq:WTFC) announced today that its wholly-owned subsidiary bank, Advantage National Bank Group ("Advantage"), has acquired certain assets and liabilities and the banking operations of The Bank of Commerce ("TBOC") in an FDIC-assisted transaction. TBOC operates one location in Wood Dale, Illinois and had approximately $163 million in total assets and $161 million in total deposits as of December 31, 2010. Advantage acquired substantially all of TBOC's assets at a discount of approximately 14% and assumed all of the non-brokered deposits at a premium of approximately 0.10%. In connection with the acquisition, Advantage entered into a loss sharing agreement with the FDIC whereby Advantage will share in losses with the FDIC on certain loans and foreclosed real estate at TBOC.

"This FDIC-assisted transaction provides a great opportunity to expand our presence adjacent to the existing communities served by the community bank locations that make up Advantage National Bank Group," said Edward J. Wehmer, President and CEO of Wintrust. "We look forward to providing the Wood Dale community with an expanded array of products and services while introducing our model of community banking." Mr. Wehmer continued to note, "We expect this transaction will be accretive to net income and earnings per share."

TBOC's location will reopen on Saturday, March 26, 2011 and operate as a branch of Advantage (which also operates locations in nearby Bloomingdale, Elk Grove Village and Roselle). Depositors of TBOC will continue to have full access to their deposits, including ATM or debit cards, and checks. Customers should continue to bank as usual.

Value Appreciation Instrument

In conjunction with the acquisition of TBOC, Wintrust provided the FDIC with a Value Appreciation Instrument ("VAI") whereby 125,000 units were awarded to the FDIC at an exercise price of $34.00 per unit. The units are exercisable at any time for 180 days after March 25, 2011. If the FDIC exercises the units, Wintrust will be required to pay the FDIC an amount in cash equal to the volume weighted average price of Wintrust common stock over the two trading days immediately prior to the exercise date minus the exercise price, but in no case greater than $8.00 per unit.

About Wintrust

Wintrust is a financial holding company with assets of approximately $14 billion whose common stock is traded on the NASDAQ Global Select Market (Nasdaq:WTFC). Wintrust operates fifteen community bank subsidiaries that are located in the greater Chicago and Milwaukee market areas. Additionally, the Company operates various non-bank subsidiaries including one of the largest commercial insurance premium finance companies operating in the United States, a company providing short-term accounts receivable financing and value-added out-sourced administrative services to the temporary staffing services industry, companies engaging primarily in the origination and purchase of residential mortgages for sale into the secondary market throughout the United States, and companies providing wealth management services including broker-dealer, money management services, advisory services, and trust and estate services. Currently, Wintrust operates more than 85 banking offices.

Forward Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the federal securities laws. Investors are cautioned that such statements are predictions and that actual events or results may differ materially. Wintrust's expected financial results or other plans are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties. For a discussion of such risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, see "Risk Factors" and the forward-looking statement disclosure contained in Wintrust's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the most recently ended fiscal year. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date made and Wintrust undertakes no duty to update the information.

CONTACT: Edward J. Wehmer
         President & Chief Executive Officer
         David A. Dykstra
         Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer
         (847) 615-4096
         Web site address: www.wintrust.com

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