The "MB" in MB Financial doesn't stand for "Midsized Businesses," though that's its target market. The holding company owns MB Financial Bank, which has about 90 branches in the Chicago area and one in Philadelphia. Commercial-related credits, including mortgages, operating loans, lease financing, and construction loans, make up nearly 75% of the bank's loan portfolio. In addition to serving small and middle-market businesses, MB Financial provides retail banking and lending to consumers. The company also offers wealth management and trust services through its Cedar Hill Associates subsidiary and brokerage through Vision Investment Services. LaSalle Systems leases technology-related equipment to corporations.
Taking advantage of the dozens of bank failures in 2009, MB Financial acquired Heritage Community Bank, InBank, Corus Bank, and Benchmark Bank in separate FDIC-assisted transactions. In 2010 it acquired failed Chicago-area institutions Broadway Bank and New Century Bank in similar deals. Gains on these acquisitions helped the company's revenues (and profits) grow in 2010. Although the company didn't have the benefit of gains on acquisitions in 2011 (and revenues fell 20% to $493.7 million), profits continued to climb that year, growing 89% to $38.7 million, largely due to a lowered provision for loan losses. Also that year the bank got millions of dollars of non-performing loans off of its books via a sale to Colony Capital.
The company has said it will continue to acquire failed banks with FDIC assistance if the opportunity arises. It believes such transactions are more profitable because they usually include loss-share agreements with the regulator and often afford the acquirer more flexibility than traditional takeovers. Other strategies for growth include expanding its private banking and asset managements operations, as well as its fee-based business services, including treasury management and leasing. – less