Make us your home page

TD Bank buys troubled parent of Mercantile Bank

Toronto-Dominion Bank is buying the troubled parent of Mercantile Bank, accelerating the Canadian institution's push to become a major player in Florida banking.

Mercantile, with 19 branches in the Tampa Bay area, is part of the South Financial Group. The Greenville, S.C.-based bank operates as Carolina First in the Carolinas.

Under a government-brokered deal announced Monday, Toronto-Dominion, which goes by TD Bank in the United States, is paying $191.6 million in cash and stock for South Financial.

The U.S. Treasury has agreed to sell about $347 million of preferred stock in South Financial to TD through its Troubled Asset Relief Program program. The government will discharge all accrued but unpaid dividends on the stock for $130.6 million.

South Financial has 176 branches in the Southeast, including 66 locations in Florida operating under the Mercantile banner. The bank has long blamed its financial woes largely on problem residential and land development loans in Florida.

TD Bank last month took over three failing Florida banks: Riverside National Bank of Florida in Fort Pierce, AmericanFirst Bank in Clermont and First Federal Bank of North Florida in Palatka.

Monday's deal acquiring South Financial "builds on our organic growth capability and the momentum of our recent acquisitions in the deposit-rich Florida market," TD Bank president and CEO Bharat Masrani said in a statement.

In announcing the deal, South Financial Group simultaneously postponed its annual meeting, which was supposed to be held Tuesday.

South Financial said the deal is expected to close later this year pending regulatory and shareholder approval.

Fast facts

Who is TD Bank?

The U.S. arm of Toronto-based TD Bank Financial Group has more than 1,100 branches and 5,300 ATMs in the United States.

What's changing at my Mercantile Bank branch?

Nothing yet. The acquisition must be approved by regulators and by shareholders of the South Financial Group. Until then, the bank says it's "business as usual" at Mercantile Bank locations.

When will the acquisition close?

It's expected to close in late 2010.

TD Bank buys troubled parent of Mercantile Bank 05/17/10 [Last modified: Tuesday, May 18, 2010 11:48am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Federal agencies demand records from SeaWorld theme park


    ORLANDO — Two federal agencies are reportedly demanding financial records from SeaWorld.

    Killer whales Ikaika and Corky participate in behaviors commonly done in the wild during SeaWorld's Killer Whale educational presentation in this photo from Jan. 9. SeaWorld has been subpoenaed by two federal agencies for comments that executives and the company made in August 2014 about the impact from the "Blackfish" documentary. 
[Nelvin C. Cepeda/San Diego Union-Tribune/TNS]
  2. Legalized medical marijuana signed into law by Rick Scott

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Gov. Rick Scott on Friday signed into law a broader medical marijuana system for the state, following through on a promise he made earlier this month.

    Gov. Rick Scott signed legislation on Friday that legalizes medical marijuana in Florida.
  3. Line of moms welcome Once Upon A Child to Carrollwood


    CARROLLWOOD — Strollers of all shapes and sizes are lined up in front of the store, and inside, there are racks of children's clothing in every color of the rainbow.

    At Once Upon A Child, you often as many baby strollers outside as you find baby furniture and accessories. It recently opened this location in Carrollwood. Photo by Danielle Hauser
  4. Pastries N Chaat brings North India cuisine to North Tampa


    TAMPA — Pastries N Chaat, a new restaurant offering Indian street food, opened this week near the University of South Florida.

    The menu at Pastries N Chaat includes a large variety of Biriyani, an entree owners say is beloved by millions. Photo courtesy of Pastries N Chaat.
  5. 'Garbage juice' seen as threat to drinking water in Florida Panhandle county


    To Waste Management, the nation's largest handler of garbage, the liquid that winds up at the bottom of a landfill is called "leachate," and it can safely be disposed of in a well that's 4,200 feet deep.

    Three samples that were displayed by Jackson County NAACP President Ronstance Pittman at a public meeting on Waste Management's deep well injection proposal. The sample on the left is full of leachate from the Jackson County landfill, the stuff that would be injected into the well. The sample on the right shows leachate after it's been treated at a wastewater treatment plant. The one in the middle is tap water.