Independent Bank Corp., parent of Rockland Trust Company, has closed its acquisition of Meridian Bancorp, Inc., parent of East Boston Savings Bank (EBSB) with thousands of EBSB customers officially becoming Rockland Trust customers Monday.
Over the weekend EBSB’s two former branches in Maverick Square and Orient Heights finished converting the branches into Rockland Trust branches and by Monday morning the EBSB logo, which has been around the neighborhood since 1848, ceased to exist and was replaced with Rockland Trust’s branding.
“We heartily welcome the customers of East Boston Savings Bank to Rockland Trust, and we look forward to demonstrating our shared commitment to the highest standards of customer service,” said Chief Executive Officer of Independent Bank Corp. and Rockland Trust Company Christopher Oddleifson. “We remain excited about the strategic benefits of this transaction and are eager to get started unlocking the opportunities resulting from the combination of two leading franchises and increased scale, including expansion of Rockland’s broad financial product set to an expanded business and consumer customer base.”
The conversion of East Boston Savings Bank customer accounts to Rockland Trust’s systems occurred over the past few weeks prior to branches opening for business on November 15, 2021. Rockland Trust customers were not impacted by the conversion.
At the effective time of the merger each Meridian Bancorp share will be exchanged for .2750 of a share of Independent’s common stock traded on NASDAQ under the INDB ticker. Meridian Bancorp shareholders will receive cash in lieu of fractional shares in accordance with the merger agreement. As a result of the merger, former Meridian Bancorp shareholders will receive approximately 14.3 million shares of Independent common stock in the aggregate.
During an earnings call ahead of the closing of the merger, Oddleifson said all employees in the involved EBSB branches will be retained, which he said was a very important consideration during merger talks.
“Internally, we continue to conduct in-depth training of our soon to be new colleagues, including a focus on Rockland Trust’s deeper product set in both the commercial and consumer areas,” he said. “And over 300 East Boston Savings Bank employees have indicated they will continue their careers with us, which we are thrilled about. These new colleagues will be a great addition to Rockland Trust and importantly they bring with them excellent relationships with their customers and communities they’ve worked hard over the years to cultivate.”
As for EBSB retiring EBSB President, Chair and CEO Richard Gavegnano, Oddleifson praised his leadership since taking the bank public in the mid-2000s.
“Richard Gavegnano orchestrated and led East Boston (Savings Bank) growth,” he said. “He has been a pleasure to work with as we collaborate and engage in the critical work of planning a successful integration.”