People’s Bank to Acquire Steelhead Finance

People’s Bank of Commerce acquired Steelhead Finance in a cash and stock transaction.

People’s Bank is a locally owned and managed bank based in Medford, OR, with total assets of $282 million, deposits of $253 million, loans of $202 million and five locations in Medford, Ashland, Central Point and Grants Pass.

Steelhead is a financial factoring company headquartered in Medford, specializing in providing financial services to the trucking industry. Steelhead is a privately held company and has been in business for 36 years serving customers throughout the U.S.

“We are very pleased to join forces with Steelhead and to have them become part of the People’s Bank family,” said Ken Trautman, president and CEO of People’s Bank. “We’ve known the company and the owners of Steelhead for many years and are excited about the future growth potential.”

As the only community commercial bank with headquarters south of Eugene, Steelhead will provide income diversification to the bank’s primary revenue stream of interest from commercial and consumer lending activities.

“Income diversification is a strategic board initiative for People’s Bank,” Trautman said. “With the addition of Steelhead’s revenue, the bank will be able to make considerable progress towards this goal.”

Roger Hull, CEO of Steelhead, will retire at the completion of the merger. “My life’s work has been building a robust and successful financial services company,” Hull said. “While it is hard to step away, I am extremely pleased to partner with People’s Bank. They have a similar corporate culture and Steelhead’s executive leadership team has been very supportive of the transition.”

Steelhead will continue to run the day-to-day operations of the company. Steelhead’s president, Bill Stewart, will remain in the same capacity and report directly to Trautman. All employees of Steelhead are being retained after the transaction. The company will operate as a wholly owned subsidiary of People’s Bank.

“We have as good a team as you’ll find in our industry,” says Stewart. “I’m very excited to join forces with another talented team at People’s Bank. This partnership will not only provide new growth opportunities for the company but will benefit all of our clients.”

The definitive agreement was unanimously approved by the board of directors of People’s Bank and Steelhead.

A portion of the purchase price was financed through the issuance of approximately 207,500 shares of People’s Bank of Commerce common stock.

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