First Merchants Corporation’s $323.5 Million Acquisition of Level One Bancorp

Barack Ferrazzano represented Level One Bancorp in the transaction.

Level One Bancorp (NASDAQ: LEVL) closed its definitive merger agreement to sell to First Merchants Corporation (NASDAQ: FRME) in a stock and cash transaction valued at approximately $323.5 million.

The transaction is expected to be completed by the first half of 2022, subject to the affirmative vote of a majority of Level One common shareholders, regulatory approvals, and other customary conditions. The combined company, conducting its banking business as First Merchants Bank, expects to complete its system integration during the third quarter of 2022.

Headquartered in Farmington Hills, Michigan, LEVL operates 16 banking center locations in the southeastern Michigan area. Since its founding in 2007, LEVL has grown to be one of the largest community banks in Michigan with consistent double-digit loan and deposit growth rates.

First Merchants is the largest financial services holding company in Central Indiana, commercial banking, credit card services, mortgage, trust services.

Piper Sandler & Co. served as financial advisor to LEVL, and Stephens Inc. served as the financial advisor to First Merchants.

Barack Ferrazzano’s legal team was led by John E. Freechack (Picture), Bill Fay and Emily N. Henkel, and assisted by associate Neil Patel. Executive compensation and benefits were handled by Andrew K. Strimaitis and associate Alex Freund. Regulatory issues were handled by John M. Geiringer, while partner Alice Lin and associate Megan E. Toal provided guidance with respect to the tax aspects of the closing. Partner Scott Porterfield handled litigation matters.

Involved fees earner: Bill Fay – Barack Ferrazzano Kirschbaum & Nagelberg; John Freechack – Barack Ferrazzano Kirschbaum & Nagelberg; Alex Freund – Barack Ferrazzano Kirschbaum & Nagelberg; John Geiringer – Barack Ferrazzano Kirschbaum & Nagelberg; Emily Henkel – Barack Ferrazzano Kirschbaum & Nagelberg; Alice Lin – Barack Ferrazzano Kirschbaum & Nagelberg; Neil Patel – Barack Ferrazzano Kirschbaum & Nagelberg; Scott Porterfield – Barack Ferrazzano Kirschbaum & Nagelberg; Andrew Strimaitis – Barack Ferrazzano Kirschbaum & Nagelberg; Megan Toal – Barack Ferrazzano Kirschbaum & Nagelberg;

Law Firms: Barack Ferrazzano Kirschbaum & Nagelberg;

Clients: Level One Bancorp Inc.;