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In This List

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Flushing-Empire Bancorp deal delayed; Sirius International launches sale process

S&P Global Market Intelligence presents a periodic summary of potential deal activity in the financial sector, including rumored transactions. This summary is based on information obtained on a best-efforts basis and may not be inclusive of all potential deal activity.


* Fort Walton Beach, Fla.-based Beach Community Bank terminated its acquisition of Florida First City Banks Inc. in light of the current economic climate, according to a court filing. Florida First, also based in Fort Walton Beach, filed a Chapter 11 petition in January, which it said would facilitate the deal.

* Uniondale, N.Y.-based Flushing Financial Corp. delayed its pending acquisition of Islandia, N.Y.-based Empire Bancorp Inc. due to market volatility and the challenges the novel coronavirus pandemic is bringing to the financial services industry.

* Jersey City, N.J.-based Provident Financial Services Inc. will consider additional deals toward the end of 2020 after passing $10 billion in assets. The company previously announced it will acquire in-state peer SB One Bancorp, which would enable it to cross over the asset threshold.

* Blairsville, Ga.-based United Community Banks Inc. said current market conditions could slow its appetite for future deals, but it would keep an eye out for deals in Florida despite its plan to focus on organic growth in the state. The company in March announced it will acquire Orlando, Fla.-based Three Shores Bancorp. Inc.

Financial services

* The independent committee of Willis Lease Finance Corp.'s board called off sale negotiations with CFW Partners LP due to factors such as market volatility and prioritizing the company's operations in light of potential impacts from the novel coronavirus pandemic.

* Goldman Sachs Group Inc. CFO Stephen Scherr said the investment banking giant's search for deals is both offensive and defensive. He said the company will be "much more acquisitive" in its efforts to accelerate growth toward its business objectives and to fill gaps in its offerings.


* Sirius International Insurance Group Ltd. launched a formal sale process as part of an expansion of its strategic review.

* Athene Holding Ltd. President Bill Wheeler said that despite the market volatility caused by the pandemic, the company will continue M&A talks initiated earlier in 2020, especially with less competition for deal targets.

* Prudential PLC is exploring other options for the planned minority IPO of its U.S. division, Jackson National Life Insurance Co., due to turmoil induced by the novel coronavirus pandemic.

* Greenlight Capital Re Ltd. is weighing alternatives amid its ongoing strategic review. The company's first course of action "did not pan out," and the strategic review has taken longer than expected, according to Chairman David Michael Einhorn.

* The prospective buyer of Continental Insurance Group Ltd. and Continental General Insurance Co. has been granted exclusivity as HC2 Holdings Inc., the owner of the insurers, seeks to advance deal discussions, according to HC2 Chairman, President and CEO Philip Falcone.

* The Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services approved Ares Management Corp. and its Aspida Financial affiliate's pending acquisition of Greg Lindberg-owned Pavonia Life Insurance Co. of Michigan. The decision came after a judge in the target's rehabilitation proceeding denied a third party's objections to the deal.

To see the previous edition of "In Play Today," click here.

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