BB&T Corp. and SunTrust Banks just got the approval they need in order to merge into Truist Bank and form the sixth largest bank in the U.S. Earlier this month, the Department of Justice signed off on the $66 billion merger, but ordered the banks to divest 28 branches to address antitrust concerns raised by the merger.
At that point, all that stood in the merger’s way was approval by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Now, both of those bodies have approved the merger, meaning the merger can move forward in earnest.
The regulatory approval process also included approvals from the Georgia Department of Banking and Finance and the North Carolina Commissioner of Banks. No further regulatory approvals are required to complete the merger of BB&T and SunTrust and all related subsidiaries.
When BB&T announced its pending “merger of equals” with SunTrust in February, the companies said they would emerge together under a new name: Truist Bank.
The companies announced the opening of a new headquarters in Charlotte, North Carolina, where they will house 2,000 of the combined company’s executive team members, who will be relocated over the next several years.
BB&T and SunTrust now expect to complete the merger on December 6, 2019, pending satisfaction of customary closing conditions.
“We are pleased to have received regulatory approval to merge two strong companies with complementary business models and a high level of cultural alignment,” said BB&T Chairman and CEO Kelly King, who will serve as chairman and CEO of Truist. “We’ll be even better together for our clients, teammates, communities and shareholders.”
BB&T common shares will become Truist common shares and SunTrust common shareholders will receive 1.295 Truist common shares for each share of SunTrust common stock they own at the closing.
Following the closing, Truist common shares will trade on the NYSE under the symbol TFC and depositary shares or preferred purchase securities representing interests in Truist Series F, G, H, I and J preferred shares will trade on the NYSE under the symbols TFC.PrF, TFC.PrG, TFC.PrH, TFC.PrI and TFC.PrJ, respectively.
“We will build upon our mission- and purpose-driven cultures and work to ensure a positive experience for our clients,” said SunTrust Chairman and CEO Bill Rogers, who will be president and chief operating officer of Truist prior to succeeding King as CEO in September 2021. “Following months of thoughtful collaborative planning, we are prepared to begin a successful integration.”
But Democrats still have their reservations.
“I have long voiced concerns about the threat that megabanks pose to consumers and our economy,” said House Financial Services Committee Chair Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif. “In order to shed light on the potential implications of the merger between SunTrust and BB&T, I convened a Financial Services Committee hearing on the merger in July. Days before the public hearing, the banks agreed to a three-year $60 billion community benefits plan with community groups that committed financial resources to low-and-moderate income communities.”
“While bank regulators placed some conditions on the merger, they should have gone further and made the promises in the community benefits plan binding on the new bank,” Waters said. “Nevertheless, the Committee will continue to conduct oversight on the new bank, and will follow up to ensure that it makes good on its promises.”