First Business acquires Kansas City bank parent


First Business Financial Services Inc. has agreed to acquire Aslin Group Inc., parent company of Kansas City-based Alterra Bank, for $30.1 million.

First Business Financial is the parent company of First Business Bank-Milwaukee.

Alterra has a competitive position in the Kansas City marketplace, where First Business operates its national equipment finance business. The move will allow First Business to expand its presence there.

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Alterra, which had $223 million in assets as of March 31, provides lines of credit, real estate loans and treasury management for small to middle market commercial clients and private banking and private wealth management for individuals. It operates out of a limited branch network.

“We are thrilled to welcome the Alterra team, whose expertise in niche lending and underwriting, coupled with a limited branch funding model are a perfect match for First Business,” said Corey Chambas, President and Chief Executive Officer of First Business. “Alterra’s deep local experience, entrepreneurial approach and impressive track record of growth, including being the number one SBA lender in Kansas City for the past two years, reflect a franchise that complements and provides synergy to First Business in almost every way. We are excited to build on our profitable growth with this strategically and financially compelling acquisition, adding value for our shareholders and clients alike.”

First Business Financial and Alterra will have $1.5 billion in assets combined. Alterra will retain its brand, offices in Overland Park and Leawood, Kansas, and its state banking charter. Current Alterra president and chief executive officer Pam Berneking will join First Business as president and CEO of Alterra Bank.

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“We are very excited to join First Business, whose outstanding capital strength, credit quality and proven track record of growth will provide Alterra with even greater resources and products to extend to businesses and individuals in Kansas City,” said Berneking said. “Alterra and First Business share a unique entrepreneurial approach to business banking. Combined, our seasoned teams will be in an even stronger position to serve our local communities.”

The transaction is expected to close in late 2014. It is expected to be accretive to First Business earnings long-term.

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