Alison Van Pelt: Hi everyone this is Alison Van Pelt with Cornerstone Advisors I’m here with my colleague Vincent Hui, we’re here to talk to you today about banking trends in 2018 for merger and acquisition work. Vincent what are your thoughts?
Vincent Hui: Well the first thing that comes to my mind Alison is that there are going to be fewer and fewer financial institutions, which means that any deals that are going to be done over the next 18-24 months and onward are going to be bigger and what that means with respect to bigger transactions is more complex decision-making and more complex integrations. You’re probably seeing that a lot in some of the integration work that you’re doing with your clients.
Alison: You’re absolutely right. What we are seeing is what we consider serial acquirers; they are really looking and striving to get a standardized playbook for their implementation and integration work so that their future merger and acquisitions are more streamlined and effective and efficient for them and they’re quicker to market. Any other thoughts?
Vincent: Yeah I think there’s one that really jumps out to me. It’s a little bit contrarian, candidly Allison it’s that traditionally banks have merged with banks, credit unions have merged with credit unions, now we’re actually seeing credit unions buying banks or bank branches and I think that’s gonna be a continuing whether you call it a trend or an opportunity. If you’re a bank and looking to sell, that’s a great opportunity to get another party in the mix to drive the price up. If you’re a credit union that’s a great opportunity to go maybe into a new market without having to go de novo, so that’s something I would definitely be at least open to if I’m out there hunting for a partner.
Alison: Really good point. So it sounds like in summary the deals are getting more complex as a number of banks and credit unions are shrinking in the industry, standardized play books seem to be a hot topic and then being open to the opportunities that are presented whether it’s bank or credit union and really looking to strategize and be creative in your solutions. So with that being said
thank you very much for your time today and happy hunting!