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New, Old & Renamed

New, Old & RenamedRecent mergers, acquisitions & corporate transactions

September 27, 2005



Topping the list of recent mergers, acquisitions and corporate transactions is a St. Louis mortgage company currently at the center of a bitter divorce battle that is changing its name.

But first, Flag Financial Corp. recently announced that its acquisition of First Capital Bancorp Inc. was approved by each company’s shareholders, letting it get a step nearer to closing the deal next quarter.

Flag Financial’s franchise includes several mortgage loan production offices in Georgia, the announcement said, while First Capital focuses on commercial lending and treasury management services for small- to medium-sized businesses.

Albany, Ga.-based Community Capital Bancshares Inc. announced that it filed an application to form a savings bank in South Carolina that would carry the name of Atlantic Bank & Trust and operate a recently acquired mortgage company.

“Opening a new bank in Charleston gives our company a way to further increase our holdings in the Southeastern United States while entering a new market,” commented Community President Robert Lee in the announcement. “We are excited about the history of and opportunity to be in this market, while expanding our base in the southeastern United States.”

The new savings bank would operate East Bay Capital Mortgage as its mortgage banking division. East Bay reportedly is a Charleston-based mortgage company that was acquired in June by Community’s lead bank Albany Bank & Trust.

Community said that the Albany Bank loan production office it recently opened in Charleston would become the new bank’s home office.

The proposed bank was initiated by three Charleston-area bankers. One of them, Hal Cobb, will serve as the proposed bank’s president, according to the announcement.

In Costa Mesa, Calif., FileNet Corp. announced Friday that it will acquire Canada-based Yaletown Technology Group Inc. for $11 million cash, in a deal expected to close early next month, to gain technology and expertise to address the compliance market.

FileNet, which reportedly provides technology to the mortgage industry by assisting them with automating processes in credit, trading and settlements, says the move will enhance its file management solution.

“Yaletown’s Records Crawler adds further value to FileNet’s Records Management product by providing improved management and integration of content assets that reside outside of FileNet ECM repositories,” said David Carlon, a FileNet director, in the announcement. “With so much corporate content to control, such as transactions and lending records, order placements and settlements records, the combination of these software assets can be very powerful for financial services companies to effectively manage their content while balancing both risk mitigation and operational efficiency.”

BNC Mortgage has merged with Finance America, said a spokeswoman of Lehman Brothers, the parent company of the two wholesale lenders.

The merger, while resulting in a three-percent headcount reduction, provides great opportunity in the mortgage origination business, she added.

Integrity Mortgage Corp. changed its name to American Equity Mortgage as part of an effort by parent company American Equity Mortgage to unify its organization and take advantage of the national brand, according to a recent press release.

The name change, which affects Integrity’s seven branches in Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana, will be supported by significant radio and outdoor advertising in Integrity’s five markets.

“With the majority of our branches operating under the same name, we can fully leverage the effectiveness and buying power of national advertising, public relations and community relations programs,” said Deanna Vinson, American’s president and chief executive officer.

Since acquiring Integrity Mortgage last year, American Equity Mortgage, which reported that last year’s loan volume exceeded $2.4 billion, made a number of operational modifications geared toward improving the mortgage banker’s service, the announcement said.

Amongst those changes was the radio advertising, which was previously done by Deanna’s husband Ray Vinson but changed in the midst of their divorce battle in which the company is also being disputed, according to the St. Louis Post Dispatch.

Coco Salazar is an assistant editor and staff writer for

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