Short Hills, N.J.-based Investors Bancorp Inc. and seven other institutions had submitted pricing indication letters for a potential acquisition of Islandia, N.Y.-based Gold Coast Bancorp Inc. by the May 29 deadline. The per-share prices ranged from $12.50 to $16.00.
Investors Bancorp's initial pricing indication valued Gold Coast Bancorp at $15.25 per share, with all shareholders receiving cash. Investors Bancorp agreed to revise its initial pricing indication to $15.75 per share and to provide a 50-50 mix of cash and Investors Bancorp common stock after being asked to consider adding a stock component to the consideration.
The institution with the highest indicated pricing, at $16.00 per share, was invited to undertake a detailed, on-site diligence review of Gold Coast Bancorp. The two institutions with the next highest indicated pricing — Investors Bancorp and another suitor — were contacted to determine whether they could match the $16.00 per share pricing. If they could, they would be invited to undertake a detailed, on-site diligence review of Gold Coast Bancorp.
Investors Bancorp indicated that it could pay $16.00 per share. The other suitor declined to confirm that ability in writing and was therefore not invited to perform on-site diligence.
The two remaining suitors undertook detailed due diligence reviews of Gold Coast Bancorp during the middle of June.
Investors Bancorp maintained its pricing indication at $15.75 per share. Its rival reduced the pricing indication to $15.00 per Gold Coast Bancorp common share, with a 75-25% mix of stock and cash as consideration. The pricing reduction was not related to anything arising from that institution's diligence review of Gold Coast Bancorp, but rather arose from the view of the board of that suitor that its stock was undervalued.
The Gold Coast Bancorp board eventually determined to move forward with Investors Bancorp to negotiate a definitive merger agreement.
The proposed transaction was announced July 24.