UPS Acquires First International Bancorp Inc

Shippers and carriers that have had difficulty finding lending institutions that understand and are willing to bankroll logistics and supply chain ventures will soon have a bank that speaks their language - courtesy of United Parcel Service (UPS).

The Atlanta GA-based package delivery giant is acquiring First International Bancorp Inc, the parent company of First International Bank, for about $78 million, to add First International's trade finance and commercial lending programs to UPS Capital Corp, the financial services arm of UPS.

UPS believes the acquisition will create a powerful combination of financial, shipping, and logistics solutions for customers that will enable them to manage their supply chains better through integration of funds, goods, and information. Also, First International's expertise in government-backed lending will enhance UPS Capital's financial services portfolio, which currently includes global trade finance, asset-based lending, factoring, payment solutions, and equipment leasing.

"First International serves small- and medium-size businesses that have traditionally been underserved by financial institutions," said Bob Bernabucci, chief executive officer of UPS Capital. "UPS and UPS Capital also are focused on this customer segment with distribution and financial solutions, so we believe this combination will be compelling."

First International primarily serves small- and medium-size manufacturers, distributors, and wholesalers. The bank offers loans in amounts up to $10 million each, and, as of Sept 30, 2000, had a managed loan portfolio of about $1.2 billion, approximately two-thirds of which is substantially guaranteed or insured by United States government agencies and other sources.

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