updated 8/24/2004 11:01:10 AM ET 2004-08-24T15:01:10

Citigroup Inc., which long has sought to expand its retail banking operations to Texas, said Tuesday that it is acquiring the First American Bank of Bryan, Texas.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed. It is expected to close in the first quarter of 2005, pending regulatory approvals.

Citigroup described First American as “one of the largest independent financial institutions in Texas.” First American, with assets of $3.5 billion, has more than 100 branches with some 120,000 customers in Texas.

“Texas is a highly attractive market, and expanding Citigroup’s Citibank retail distribution franchise in the United States, especially in important geographies such as this, is a key element of our strategy,” Citigroup president and chief operating officer Robert B. Willumstad said.

He added: “To accomplish our goals, we intend to drive the growth of the retail banking operation in Texas.”

Citigroup already has major consumer and commercial finance operations in Texas but no retail banking operations, Citigroup officials said.

Donald A. Adam, First American’s chairman and chief executive, said he was “very pleased that Citigroup has chosen First American Bank as its entry into Texas banking. ... Our team of professionals looks forward to working with Citigroup.”

The announcement said Citigroup plans to retain all of First American’s branches and selling locations along with its entire staff. Following the acquisition, First American branch locations will be converted to Citibank financial centers, it said.

New York-based Citigroup, the nation’s largest financial institution, had $1.19 trillion in assets at the end of the second quarter.

Citigroup currently employs about 16,000 people in Texas, most of them with CitiFinancial International, a consumer finance business based in Dallas, and CitiCapital, a commercial finance business headquartered in Irving. It also has mortgage and insurance centers.

First American Bank is a subsidiary of The Adam Corporation/Group.

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