Chittenden Bank to be sold

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(Host) Some big news today in Vermont’s banking community.

Chittenden, the state’s largest bank, is being sold to another bank, based in Connecticut.

People’s United Financial of Bridgeport, Connecticut, announced the $1.9 billion sale today.

Chittenden Bank and its subsidiaries have over six billion dollars in assets, and operate in Massachusetts as well as the northern tier of New England states.
People’s United has 160 branches across Connecticut.

Speaking at a news conference this afternoon, Chittenden Bank president Paul Perrault said the sale reflects the shared philosophies of the two companies.

(Perrault) “For me, a very important consideration is the willingness of People’s United to work with and continue our unique, New England multi-bank locally managed structure. Our job at our six banks will be to ensure that this structure remains the most effective approach for our customers now and in the future.”

(Host) The bank will retain the Chittenden name, and no branch closings are expected.

People’s United president John Klein spoke by phone at this afternoon’s press conference. He said a small percentage of what he called personnel redundancies’ should be expected, with layoffs to be announced late this year.

But Chittenden President Paul Perrault added that the bottom line of this acquisition remains a shared culture of social responsibility.

(Perrault) “During the 90’s, and in the early part of this century, there were a lot of bank deals that were done solely based on cost-cutting, and market share and size and things like that. I want to make very clear this is not one of those deals. This is about building things.”

(Host) If approved by regulators and Chittenden shareholders, the deal is expected to close in the first quarter of next year.

After the acquisition there will be eight remaining state-chartered banks; Merchants Bank would become the largest in Vermont.

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