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First Niagara announces $400 million stock offering

First Niagara Financial Group Inc. will offer $400 million of common stock, its third offering in the last 12 months, the Lockport-area bank said Wednesday.

The latest offering will bolster First Niagara’s “already well-capitalized position,” and allow for continued growth in its current market or through acquisitions, the bank said in a statement.

Net proceeds will be used to for general corporate purposes, the bank said.

First Niagara raised $115 million in a September 2008 offering, netting $108.8 million. It raised $380.4 million in April, netting $360.7 million.

The latest offering will be underwritten through Keefe, Bruyette & Woods Inc. and Sandler O’Neill + Partners L.P. First Niagara intends to allow the underwriters to purchase up to an additional 15 percent of the shares sold to cover any over-allotments, the bank said.

First Niagara recently completed the acquisition of 57 National City Bank branches in western Pennsylvania, all of which are now First Niagara Bank branches. It is in the process of acquiring Harleysville National Corp., which has 83 branches in the Philadelphia suburbs.   

Shares (Nasdaq: FNFG) were trading at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday at $12.73, down nearly 3 percent from Tuesday’s close.
 

(c) 2009 Rochester Business Journal. Obtain permission to reprint this article.

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