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Virginia companies merging to create largest bank in state

Union First Market Bankshares Corp., from Richmond, Virginia, is set to acquire StellarOne, based in Charlottesville, in a $445.1 million merger. After the merger, Virginia National Bank, located in Richmond, will be the area's main community bank. Changes should not affect customers until the summer.

The decline of banks nationwide does not signal fortunate change, however. Community banks control less than 10 percent of total U.S. assets currently while bigger banks control around 80 percent. This could negatively affect the communities they're in because small businesses depend on small banks for loans, for example. Credit unions are projected to do better because of their regulatory structures, which differ from other banks.

Many factors can affect businesses. Mergers and acquisitions happen on a daily basis as companies expand and grow to better serve their customers and clients. Regardless of what stage a business is at, most corporations will consult with an attorney when expanding into new markets or when they are ready to steer their business into a new direction. Strategic planning is key at this point, and long term needs and goals require the advice of a professional.

A business attorney can help provide support during all stages of most business transactions, including drafting agreements, negotiating agreements, advice on financial arrangements and compliance with corporation laws and governmental laws. During any merger, transaction or acquisition, the proper execution and strategy should involve a lawyer experienced in business. Businesses can benefit greatly from an attorney knowledgeable in the field, one that is prepared to answer questions and provide consultation on such things as contract law and commercial litigation.

Source: The Daily Progress, "CBJ: What mergers mean for the banking industry and local communities", Nate Delesline III , December 09, 2013

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