©2011 Galesburg Broadcasting Co.
|First Bank Branches to be Part of Another Bank
|A bank with two locations in Galesburg and one in Knoxville are part of a sale to another bank -- a sale that the local bank president says speaks well of the local community.
First Bank Galesburg branch president Mark Blackburn says the three Knox County branches, along with ones in Peoria, Bloomington, Quincy, and Bartonville are being sold to Mattoon, Illinois-based First Mid-Illinois Bank and Trust in a deal that's been worked on the past three months or so.
Blackburn tells WGIL he's talked a number of times with First Mid C.E.O. William Rowland, who has told him he really likes the area.
"He told me himself that they like to be in markets in Illinois cities that 'make things.' That, obviously, bodes well for Galesburg," Blackburn said. "It's still viewed as a community that manufactures light manufacturing as well as...I guess, in less cases, heavier manufacturing. The (Burlington Northern Santa Fe) railroad played a key role, I think, in attracting the new bank here, too."
Blackburn says for someone like him, it's "very refreshing" to hear that an outside company wants to invest in areas like Galesburg, and that it should be good for local residents to hear, too.
He says all local staff will be retained, and there may even be some new jobs added in the future as what will become the local First Mid branches add a number of banking products they haven't had before.
First Mid will acquire $340 million in deposits and another $150 million in pending loans as part of the deal, expected to close in September pending regulatory approval.
First Banks is based in Creve Coeur, Missouri.
(The First Bank branch at Main and Cherry Streets in Galesburg is among the ones that will be acquired by another bank. WGIL News Story and Photo by Will Stevenson.)
|05 10 10 by Newsroom
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