Agreed-Upon Sale of West Chester’s Stonebridge Bank Still Awaits Regulatory Approval

Image of Gordon Denlinger, left, and financial adviser Mark McCollom via Richard Hertzler, Lancaster Online.

West Chester’s Stonebridge Bank is still waiting for regulatory approval for its sale to a group of Lancaster County investors 17 months after the original agreement, writes Jeff Blumenthal for the Philadelphia Business Journal.

The bank was put up for sale following the bankruptcy of its parent company, Stonebridge Financial. Soon after, a group of Lancaster County investors agreed to purchase the bank for $570,000. The deal was approved by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Philadelphia on Nov. 9, 2015.

The buyers planned to change the bank’s name to Hamilton Bank, while preserving its headquarters in West Chester and continuing to serve Chester and Lancaster counties. Further plans called for the opening of a separate Lancaster-area location.

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However, the team has since run into numerous regulatory roadblocks, forcing the group to return more than $10.7 million to investors after missing a purchase deadline last year. They also had to pay a fine of $190,000 last summer for alleged unregistered securities sales.

Following these issues, the investors withdrew their original purchase application. They then resubmitted it on March 22 with several new lead investors, but regulatory approval is still pending.

Read more about the potential sale in the Philadelphia Business Journal here, and check out previous VISTA Today coverage of Stonebridge Bank here.

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