Washington First International Bank Acquired by East West Bancorp

East West Bancorp, headquartered in Pasadena, California, held a press conference in Seattle’s Hilton hotel last Friday the 11th to announce their acquisition of Washington First International Bank (WFIB). East West’s most recent acquisition was that of United Commercial Bank in November 2009, which they had finished system integration as of April 26th this year.

With the acquisitions, the now largest Asian-American focused bank has well over $20 billion in assets and 6 branches in Washington State.

East West Bancorp, headquartered in Pasadena, California, held a press conference in Seattle’s Hilton hotel last Friday the 11th to announce their acquisition of Washington First International Bank (WFIB). East West’s most recent acquisition was that of United Commercial Bank in November 2009, which they had finished system integration as of April 26th this year.

With the acquisitions, the now largest Asian-American focused bank has well over $20 billion in assets and 6 branches in Washington State.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and East West have entered into a loss sharing agreement covering the acquired loans. Under the terms of the transaction, East West will receive approximately $504 million in assets, including $403 in loans, and assume approximately $478 million in liabilities, including $415 million in deposits.

Ng added that their current goal in the Washington State is to better understand the business and customers from the recent acquisitions. They will also try to keep business as usual for customers and employees alike. The International District WFIB branch had already reopened as East West Bank as of Saturday, with the other branches to follow suite on Monday. Mr. Ng is confident of East West’s performance in Washington State with its focus on “localized, customized, [and] personalized” services of the past 37 years.

Seattle is considered a “strategic location” by Mr. Ng for its Pacific Rim trade, which coincides with East West’s vision to bridge Asia and the States.

East West Bancorp is publicly owned and is traded on the Nasdaq under the symbol “EWBC”. The company’s wholly owned subsidiary, East West Bank, is one of the largest independent commercial banks headquartered in California with over 130 worldwide locations. In Northeast Asia, East West’s presence includes a full service branch in Hong Kong and representative offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, and Taipei. For more information, visit the company’s website at www.eastwestbank.com.

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