OLYMPIA - The company that owns Heritage Bank wants to raise as much as $100 million by selling common stock, preferred stock or warrants, according to a recent regulatory filing.
Heritage Financial filed a regulatory document known as a shelf registration with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
“It gives us the authority to do one or all” of the options listed above, president and chief executive Brian Vance said Wednesday.
The money raised could be used for general corporate purchases, to repay Troubled Asset Relief Program funds, to pay down debt or to possibly acquire bank branches or another financial institution, according to the regulatory filing. The U.S. Treasury invested $24 million of TARP funds into Heritage in 2008, a move Vance called a precautionary step because of the slower economy.
Although Heritage has the shelf authorization to raise more money, the company first will “leverage” money it raised last fall, Vance said.
In September, Heritage raised nearly $50 million by selling about 4.3 million shares of common stock at $11.50 a share, the second such offering of its stock since the company went public in 1998. That money, too, could be used for an acquisition, although the shelf registration allows the company to respond to a fast-moving banking environment if a deal presents itself, he said.
“It’s just prudent to have it in place should we need to use it,” Vance said.
D.A. Davidson senior research analyst Jeff Rulis, who tracks the company’s stock, could not be reached Wednesday. Heritage’s stock, which trades under the ticker symbol HFWA, was unchanged Wednesday at $14.97 a share. In the past 52 weeks, the stock’s value has ranged from $10.51 to $16.46 a share.
Heritage officials recently visited the former Venture Bank headquarters in DuPont. That building is largely vacant after state and federal regulators closed and sold the bank to First Citizens Bank & Trust Co. on Sept. 11. Officials with First Citizens later determined that the bank did not need that much space and moved the remaining DuPont-based staff to Lacey.
Venture Bank spent about $14 million to build the 54,000-square-foot, three-story building at 1495 Wilmington Drive; it opened in 2007.
Atlthough Heritage officials looked at the building, the company likely would expand into available space closer to its downtown headquarters, Vance said.
Rolf Boone: 360-754-5403 firstname.lastname@example.org www.theolympian.com/bizblog