Maine Community Bank of Biddeford and Gorham Savings Bank have agreed to merge next year to form the state’s second-largest mutual savings bank with 24 combined locations and more than 75,000 depositors.

The two banks will merge under the Maine Community Bank name and will be headquartered in Portland with operation centers in Gorham and Westbrook, according to information provided by the banks. The network of branches in Cumberland, York and Androscoggin counties – Gorham Savings has 14; Maine Community Bank has 10 – also will be among the state’s biggest.

“Community banking is the foundation of Maine’s economy, providing the essential funding necessary for businesses to start and grow, providing housing, and helping our communities thrive,” Maine Community Bank President and CEO Jeanne Hulit said. “This merger of two locally focused banks gives us an even greater ability to meet these needs.”

“Merging our two institutions makes sense across the board and marks an exciting new chapter,” said Steve deCastro, president and CEO of Gorham Savings Bank. “Our values and mission align very well, underpinning our commitment to meeting the ever-growing needs of our customers, acting as a force for good in the communities we serve, and providing greater opportunities for our employees.”

The combined company will employ more than 400 banking professionals and will be governed by a 16-person board made up of an equal number of current directors from each bank. DeCastro will serve as CEO of the merged company while Hulit will be president, although she plans to retire 12 months after the merger is completed, which isn’t expected until the third quarter of 2024. Hulit served for several years as New England regional administrator for the U.S. Small Business Administration and as acting administrator of the full SBA for a short time under President Barack Obama.

Maine Community Bank was the result of the 2020 merger between Biddeford Savings and Mechanics Savings, although those two banks had been part of the same mutual holding company since 2016. Gorham Savings Bank has been around for more than 150 years and is the only Maine-based bank headquartered in Cumberland County.

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