PROSB absorbs seven rural banks

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A THRIFT BANK has absorbed seven rural lenders, in line with a push by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) for bank mergers.

In a circular issued last week, the BSP said Producers Savings Bank Corp. (PROSB) has merged with seven rural banks based in different parts of the country.

BSP Deputy Governor Chuchi G. Fonacier issued Circular Letter 2019-044 on July 21 to announce that PROSB has been named as the surviving corporation following a merger plan executed by the banks in January.

The Securities and Exchange Commission approved on the plan and articles of merger last May 31.

The seven rural banks absorbed by PROSB effective June 1 are: Rural Bank of Pamplona, Inc., Bangko Rural ng Pasacao, Inc., Bangko Rural ng Magarao, Inc., and Rural Bank of San Fernando, Inc. in Camarines Sur; Rural Bank of Barotac Nuevo, Inc. in Iloilo; Rural Bank of Sibalom, Inc. in Antique; and Rural Bank of President Quirino, Inc. in Sultan Kudarat.

The assets and liabilities of the seven rural lenders were transferred to and absorbed by PROSB.

PROSB is a thrift lender headquartered in Pasig City led by Andres M. Cornejo as president and chief executive officer.

The bank has 175 branches.

In February, PROSB acquired the Rural Bank of San Quintin in Pangasinan.

In July last year, the PROSB also absorbed Rural Bank of Bustos, Inc. in Bulacan and Rural Bank of Sto. Domingo, Inc. in Nueva Ecija.

PROSB was the 11th largest bank in terms of assets as of end-2018 with P18.39 billion, according to latest available central bank data.

The BSP has been encouraging mergers among small banks in order to fortify their financial footing by dangling a host of incentives for those who pursue such plans.

State agencies have also extended the Consolidation Program for Rural Banks until October to prod lenders located in one province or region to come together and form a new financial entity.

These mergers are seen to bolster the capital and asset base of these lenders, making them more liquid and resilient versus defaults. — RJNI