Planet Princeton

Investor May Challenge Bank of Princeton Merger

An investor in The Bank of Princeton may seek to block Investors Bancorp’s planned $154 million acquisition of the company, according to a regulatory filing made by Investors Bancorp on Thursday.

The investor, James Michael Goodson, has filed a “change in control notice” in which he proposes to buy 24.9 percent of The Bank of Princeton’s outstanding common stock.

“We have reason to believe that Mr. Goodson is seeking FDIC approval… for the purpose of voting against the merger agreement and causing it to be terminated,” Investors Bancorp said in the prospectus.

With the purchase of such a large amount of stock, Goodson could possibly block the proposed merger and future mergers, elect a majority of the bank’s board of directors, or change the bank’s business strategy, according to the prospectus.

As of December 31, 2015, Investors Bancorp operated 140 offices located in New Jersey and New York. The company was founded in 1926 and is headquartered in Short Hills. The Bank of Princeton has 13 branches and $1 billion in assets.

Investors Bancorp and The Bank of Princeton signed an agreement earlier this year under which The Bank of Princeton will merge with and into Investors Bank. The agreement was announced in May. If the deal falls through, the Bank of Princeton is obligated to pay Investors Bancorp a break-up fee of $6.4 milion.

A two-thirds vote of The Bank of Princeton’s shares is required to approve the acquisition. Votes will be tallied at a special meeting of The Bank of Princeton shareholders that has not been scheduled yet.

Krystal Knapp

Krystal Knapp is the founding editor of Planet Princeton. She can be reached via email at editor AT planetprinceton.com. Send all letters to the editor and press releases to that email address.

1 comment

  • So what else is new in the world of Banking . . . Just another business looking out to make money. Who cares about its customers . . . Time to go to bitcoins or barter for the public to get a handle on their own finances. The Fed screws us; the banks screw us; we are used & abused by them all.

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