Sandler O'Neill & Partners LP was the top financial adviser for bank and thrift M&A in the first half of 2018 both by deal value and by number of deals, followed by Keefe Bruyette & Woods Inc., according to S&P Global Market Intelligence's league table rankings.
Sandler advised on 32 bank and thrift M&A deals and earned $9.29 billion in deal credit through the first two quarters of 2018. KBW worked on 20 M&A deals with total deal value of $5.26 billion.
Based on deal value, Sandler's largest assignment in the second quarter was as financial adviser to MB Financial Inc. on its $4.60 billion pending sale to Fifth Third Bancorp announced in May. Citigroup Global Markets Inc. ranked third among financial advisers during the first half in terms of deal value, thanks to its role as financial adviser to Fifth Third for the latter deal.
Sandler advised State Bank Financial Corp. on its $1.37 billion pending sale to Cadence Bancorp. announced in May. Raymond James & Associates Inc., which also advised State Bank Financial, ranked fourth in the deal value league table after landing seven deals in the second quarter.
For KBW, its largest second-quarter assignment was serving as financial adviser to Guaranty Bancorp on its $1.04 billion pending sale to Independent Bank Group Inc. announced in May. KBW also advised People's United Financial Inc. on its $543.0 million pending acquisition of First Connecticut Bancorp Inc. announced in June.
Sandler and KBW both served as financial advisers to CapStar Financial Holdings Inc. on its $116.1 million pending acquisition of Athens Bancshares Corp. announced in June.
Among legal advisers, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP, which served as Fifth Third's legal adviser on its pending purchase of MB Financial, was the top legal adviser by deal value for bank and thrift M&A in the first half of 2018. It advised on three transactions worth $6.12 billion in total.
Luse Gorman PC worked on more deals than any other M&A legal adviser as of June 30, with 10 deals.