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Mercantil Bank Holding Corp. to be spun off from Venezuelan parent company

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Mercantil Bank Holding Corp. to be spun off from Venezuelan parent company

Mercantil Bank Holding Corp. will be spun off from its ultimate parent company, Venezuela-based Mercantil Servicios Financieros C.A., and become an independent organization, according to a Dec. 20 announcement.

Mercantil Bank Holding Corp. is the Florida-based holding company for Mercantil Bank NA. The news release said it is the "next step in a long-term strategic initiative to further expand" the bank's presence in south Florida, Houston and the New York City area. Separating its U.S. and Venezuelan parent companies, the news release said, will let the two "compete more effectively, simplify their operations, reduce risks and improve their performance."

The shareholders of Mercantil Servicios Financieros, or MSF, approved the spinoff and will hold 80.1% of the U.S. holding company's class A and class B common stock. MSF will have the remaining 19.9% of the stocks and plans on selling them on occasion once the spinoff is complete, expected to happen in the first half of 2018. The move requires approval from regulators and the filing of a registration statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Mercantil Bank Holding Corp.'s stock will be listed on a U.S. national exchange, the news release said.