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GREAT WESTERN ACQUIRES HOMEFED'S BRANCHES AND DEPOSITS

 CHATSWORTH, Calif., Dec. 3 /PRNewswire/ -- Great Western Bank today announced it has concluded a definitive agreement with the Resolution Trust Corp. to acquire 119 branches and approximately $4.1 billion in deposits of HomeFed Bank, F.A., San Diego. The transaction closed today.
 Great Western will acquire substantially all of HomeFed for a premium of 3.7 percent of deposits or $151 million. The transaction does not include 17 branches and approximately $600 million in deposits of the HomeFed franchise located in West Los Angeles, San Bernardino and Riverside counties which have been purchased by other bidders and the Julian and Ridgecrest branches.
 HomeFed offices will be closed Saturday and reopen Monday as Great Western branches staffed with HomeFed employees.
 "This acquisition enables Great Western to more than triple its deposit market share in San Diego County, home of California's second largest city," said James F. Montgomery, chairman and chief executive of Great Western Financial Corp. "These newly acquired branches and deposits will help Great Western meet several of its strategic objectives including growth in transaction or checking account balances; improved fee and commission income; and the development of a comprehensive California branch network that delivers economies of scale," said Montgomery.
 The HomeFed acquisition adds the following branches to Great Western Bank:
 -- San Diego County; 57 branches
 -- Los Angeles County; 18 branches
 -- Orange County; 24 branches
 -- Santa Barbara County; 5 branches
 -- Ventura County; 8 branches
 -- San Luis Obispo County; 7 branches
 The company, however, said that it expects to achieve significant economies through the consolidation of approximately half of the branch offices. Most consolidations will be announced within the next several months.
 With deposits of nearly $24 billion, Great Western is now the third- largest financial institution in California measured by deposits. In San Diego County alone, the acquisition increases Great Western's deposits from $690 million to $2.76 billion making Great Western the third largest financial institution in San Diego County measured by deposits.
 "The HomeFed branch network is a high-quality franchise with a reputation for superior customer service," Montgomery added. "We look forward to providing former HomeFed customers and their communities with a high level of service."
 With assets of $37.6 billion, Great Western Financial Corp. is a diversified financial services company operating more than 1,100 mortgage lending, retail banking and consumer finance offices nationwide. The company's principal subsidiary, Great Western Bank operates extensive banking branch networks in California and Florida.
 At Sept. 30, 1993, Great Western exceeded all fully phased-in federal capital requirements for well-capitalized institutions. Great Western Bank's leverage capital ratio was 5.67 percent compared with a minimum federal standard for well-capitalized institutions of 5 percent. Risk-adjusted capital was 12.05 percent compared with a minimum federal standard for well-capitalized institutions of 10 percent.
 -0- 12/3/93
 /NOTE TO EDITORS: Great Western will conduct a telephone press conference, Friday, Dec. 3, at approximately 6:15 p.m., PST. Ian Campbell, senior vice president, Corporate Communications, will be available to answer reporters' questions about the HomeFed acquisition. To join the teleconference, telephone 800-362-4007, at approximately 6 p.m. PST. An operator will provide instructions about how to ask questions./
 /CONTACT: Ian Campbell, 818-775-3773, or Linda Mueller, 818-775-3653, or (in San Diego) Steve Hawkins or Roger Cruzen, 619-239-2400/


CO: Great Western Bank; HomeFed Bank F.A. ST: California IN: FIN SU: TNM

EH-LM -- LA034 -- 0476 12/03/93 21:10 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Dec 3, 1993
Words:567
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