February 26, 2020
DFS APPROVES NEW YORK STATE-CHARTERED FLUSHING BANK’S ACQUISITION OF EMPIRE NATIONAL BANK
Announcement Will Increase Access to Banking Services in Suffolk County, Underserved Communities, Building on State’s Commitment to Connect all New Yorkers with Affordable and Accessible Financial Services
Superintendent of Financial Services Linda A. Lacewell today announced that the Department of Financial Services (DFS) has approved New York State-chartered Flushing Bank’s application to acquire Empire National Bank (“Empire Bank”).
“Today’s approval underscores DFS’ commitment to support the expansion of New York State-chartered banking institutions to enhance access to financial services and products - a key part of Governor Cuomo’s 2020 State of the State agenda,” said Superintendent Linda A. Lacewell. “Existing customers of both banks are expected to benefit from the financial services of the larger combined institution and the customers of Empire National Bank will continue to have access to their existing branches under Flushing Bank.”
Both Flushing Bank and Empire Bank are relationship-based, community-oriented financial institutions with similar customer bases. Flushing Bank currently operates offices located in Queens, Brooklyn, Manhattan and on Long Island. Empire Bank has four full-service banking offices in Islandia, Shirley, Port Jefferson Station, and Mineola. Through the approval of this acquisition, Flushing Bank will ultimately offer significant product and service line expansion, a greater geographic presence in New York, specifically in Suffolk County, and enhanced technology and customer service resources.
As outlined in Governor Cuomo’s State of the State agenda, financial inclusion and access to affordable banking services is a top priority in New York State. The approval of this acquisition builds on the Governor and DFS’ commitment to financial inclusion and empowerment, providing small businesses and all New Yorkers the opportunity to access banking services and financial products across all corners of the state.
“We are pleased to receive approval to move forward on our acquisition of Empire, bringing together our two organizations with similar cultures and values, to achieve significant cost synergies and create one of Long Island’s largest banks by deposit share among regional and community banks,” said John R. Buran, President and CEO of Flushing Bank. “This acquisition is expected to increase core deposits, lower cost of funds, improve loan to deposit ratios, and enhance our core earnings power. Additionally, Flushing Bank’s reach will be expanded into Suffolk County creating a stronger community bank with a network of 24 branches in Queens, Brooklyn, Manhattan, and on Long Island.”
Based on financial statements as of September 30, 2019, the combined bank will have total assets of approximately $8.1 billion.