Kentucky holding company moving into Ohio

Lexington, Ky.-based Forcht Bancorp is moving into Ohio with its acquisition of Cincinnati’s Watch Hill Bank. Forcht is paying $30 for each of the outstanding shares of Watch Hill’s holding company, MW Bancorp, Inc. Watch Hill Bank will be merged into Forcht Bank when the purchase is completed.

Watch Hill Bank is an Ohio-chartered savings and loan association originally established in 1886. Watch Hill Bank operates  offices in Cincinnati. As of March 31, MW Bancorp had approximately $163 million in total assets and $144 million in total loans and leases. It had $98 million in deposits as of June 30, 2017.

Gregory P. Niesen, Watch Hill president and CEO, will serve as Forcht’s Cincinnati market president following close of the merger late this year. Other employees of Watch Hill Bank are also expected to join Forcht.

“We believe this merger will offer customers of both banks even greater strength and resources while maintaining our commitments to the communities in which we serve,” said Forcht President and CEO Tucker Ballinger.

The $1 billion Forcht Bank operates 25 offices in 12 Kentucky counties: Fayette, Jefferson, Boone, Grant, Madison, Taylor, Pulaski, Laurel, Whitley, Knox, McCreary and Green.

Wyatt, Tarrant & Combs, LLP served as legal advisor, to Forcht Bancorp, Inc. and Forcht Bank in this transaction. Sandler O’Neill & Partners, L.P. served as financial advisor, and Luse Gorman, PC served as legal advisor, to MW Bancorp, Inc. and Watch Hill Bank in this transaction.