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TravisNC

Bank of America to buy FleetBoston

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Report: Bank of America to buy Fleet

The story doesn't say where the headquarters for the combined company will be. One would assume Charlotte since BofA is the larger bank and the buyer in this situation, but Fleet's current Chairman will be Chairman of the combined company. BofA's current CEO will be CEO of the current company. Even though the CEO is the executive you hear the most about, the Chairman is chairman of the board of directors and the board can over rule the CEO. So it's possible it will move to Boston. I suppose it's also possible that the HQ of the combined company will move to New York. BofA has been trying hard to make a name for itself there. They're opening branches in NY, building a new tower there, and they're going to announce the BofA/Fleet merger there. I sure hope the HQ doesn't move. New York and Boston have plenty of companies to bring their city prestige in the business world, while Charlotte needs all it can get. BTW, the BofA name will replace Fleet's name in the Northeast.

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BofA likes being the big fish in the pond. I think they'll be around Charlotte for awhile. With BofA agreeing not to drain all the Fleet Boston jobs out of New England, i doubt this means much for employment here either.

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Here is the article from CNN, it says in the article the bank will remain HQ in Charlotte. Good news for Charlotte.

BOSTON

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WHY do they use "NC" after Charlotte? It's nothing to lose sleep over, but come on..."enough already".

In any case, BoA is now the biggest bank in the USA (at least until Citigroup makes it's move on...Wells Fargo?).

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This will put pressure on Wachovia to build a new tower in Charlotte. The vacancy in downtown is falling...going down past 9% now.

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how does that put pressue on wachovia to build a tower? Wachovia's needs have nothing to do with BofA's acquisitions.

Anyways, I consider this great news for BofA and Charlotte. This also increases Charlotte's banking assets, a figure that pisses many people off (Heckles, hehe). But moreover I take this to mean that BofA is doing well enough financially to get aggressive, hopefully meaning continued growth of jobs and investment in Charlotte, even if this merger doesn't mean immediate growth of jobs.

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Does anyone have any images of the once-proposed Wachovia (First Union) HQ Tower?

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BofA will now be competing head on with Wachovia in the NorthEast US...which is Wachovia's cash cow.

Anytime, BofA makes a big move like this it takes attention away from Wachovia...and they hate it. Just adds fuel to the fire of them building a new tower. I predict there will be a major annoucment in 2004.

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uptown, have you heard new rumors or is that just a personal prediction? Im thinking any new BofA building would be a new midrise at gateway.

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There are plans for a midrise addition to Gateway Village that will be in the parking lot behind the current 900 building.

There are also plans for Corporate 2 which will be in the parking lot on College behind Corporate

Wachovia is shutting down the 2 Wachovia Annex...which is most likely where they plan to put in their next new tower.

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This is not based on rumors...but based on market conditions....when a market dips below 10% vacancy and keeps on showing signs of a lowering office vacancy rate then new buildings get built. Charlottes was right at 10% 6 months ago, and is at 9% now, with no major new office under construction...so market conditions dictate that something will get built in the near future.

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well lincoln harris pretty much shelved two corporate. however, if they could secure BoA as a tenant in part of the space i think they'd build it. The convention center redevelopment could catalyze that project.

Also remember that the true vacancy rate is closer to 11-12% including sub leases.

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Whats amazing to me is that once the merger is completed, Charlotte will become home to the 2nd largest banking company in the WORLD.

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It's already being speculated by some of the Charlotte-bashers on another forum where this news was posted that Charlotte will likely lose Bank of America if these mergers continue because, supposedly, BoA will "have" to move its headquarters to someplace like New York in order to keep pace with the banking bad boys of places like London and Tokyo. One statement made there was that BoA wouldn't be building a gigantic tower in Midtown Manhattan just to house a loan processing center or whatever -- so that must mean the BoA Corporate Center is about to go vacant! They're all intently anticipating doom, gloom, wailing and gnashing of teeth, wearing of sackcloth and sprinkling of ashes upon Charlottean heads -- you get the picture.

I'm inclined to laugh a carefree laugh and eagerly await the day when Charlottean banks acquire a few more of New York's banks (and a few more of Chicago's and Richmond's, and San Francisco's, and Atlanta's, and...) and move them all to Charlotte, whereupon the Queen City will be crowned the banking capital of America.

But business is a nasty business, as I'm sure everyone knows and no matter a corporation's commitment to a place, mergers and the fight to stay alive in the wonderful world of capitalism can change things. Will BoA keep itself firmly planted in Carolina soil? I hope so, and in fact I pray so. But no matter what one person wants, or even what an entire city wants, sometimes you don't get what you want.

What are your opinions? Does BoA stay in Charlotte or does it merge itself off to another city to keep pace with "London and Tokyo?"

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WHY do they use "NC" after Charlotte? It's nothing to lose sleep over, but come on..."enough already".

I've always wondered the same. It's time that Charlotte gets recognized as Charlotte and not Charlotte, NC, every other city in America doesn't have their state attached at the end. Boston, Chicago, San Francisco, Dallas, Miami, Atlanta, Seattle, Denver and then you have poor old Charlotte, NC that can't do anything on it's own but has to be attached at the hip with NC when NC hasn't done crap for Charlotte.

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It's already being speculated by some of the Charlotte-bashers on another forum where this news was posted that Charlotte will likely lose Bank of America if these mergers continue because, supposedly, BoA will "have" to move its headquarters to someplace like New York in order to keep pace with the banking bad boys of places like London and Tokyo.  One statement made there was that BoA wouldn't be building a gigantic tower in Midtown Manhattan just to house a loan processing center or whatever -- so that must mean the BoA Corporate Center is about to go vacant!  They're all intently anticipating doom, gloom, wailing and gnashing of teeth, wearing of sackcloth and sprinkling of ashes upon Charlottean heads -- you get the picture.

--snip--

I hope Bank of America doesn't move, but I suppose it is possible. I haven't seen the post you mention, but I do have some comments about what you said they said.

As far as having to move because they will keep getting larger through mergers. BofA was already the 15th largest bank in the world before the Fleet merger. That's huge considering how many banks there are around the world.

As far as the building in NY, BofA has large buildings in all the major US and world cities. I believe I read that some divisions of BofA are HQed in NY. That's probably why they need the space. I don't think you have to have your HQ in NY to be a player in the banking world, but you do need some offices there. Atlanta or Seattle (depending on whether you include Atlanta's spire) has the tallest BofA building, but that doesn't make it the HQ.

Plus, even though Hugh McColl isn't with BofA anymore I think he would try hard to persuade the current BofA executives to stay in Charlotte if they talked about moving the HQ.

WHY do they use "NC" after Charlotte? It's nothing to lose sleep over, but come on..."enough already".

That bugs me too. I always make note of whether they tell the state or not when they mention Charlotte. For instance in my local paper they have a list of weather forcasts for major cities around the US. Charlotte has N.C. beside it while smaller cities like Boise, Casper, Cheyenne, Dayton, El Paso, Helena, Jacksonville, Little Rock, Louisville, Omaha, Pendleton(???), and Richmond don't have their states mentioned. I guess it will just take more time for Charlotte's name to become more familiar, but, Casper, Helena, and Pendleton, come on! I still don't know where Pendleton is.

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Yes, BofA will stay in Charlotte...this is it's home. Its at the point now where BofA is too big to merge with anyone else, so there is no risk of it getitng bought out by another bank...and as for moving the HQ to New York?

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I'm inclined to laugh a carefree laugh and eagerly await the day when Charlottean banks acquire a few more of New York's banks (and a few more of Chicago's and Richmond's, ...

There are no more big banks in Richmond, VA. They've all gone to Charlotte, Winston, and Atlanta. There are some community banks, they've been popping up like mushrooms around here. ;)

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Lol -- actually I put that in because I recall reading a Patricia Cornwell novel where she stated that one of the reasons people in Richmond hate Charlotte so much is because Charlotte keeps stealing their banks.

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Damn that Patricia Cornwell! Her books paint a fairly accurate portrait of Richmond. Yes, there are some here who haven't gotten over all the banks moving out, but then there's also some here who haven't gotten over the "Late Unpleasantness", aka, The War of Northern Aggression.

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Bank Of America emphasized too much on its hometown history to be considering New York.

According to CNN/Money

Citigroup, Wachovia, Bank One and Wells Fargo are considering more mergers, and KeyCorp, National City, Comerica, SunTrust, PNC Financialand U.S. Bancorp are takeover targets. Now Wachovia can't get another strong foothold in the Northeast, and if they want to compete with BofA, they must seek other banks that has a strong regional presence.

Top 15 U.S. Banks, Ranked by Assets

Assets reflect pending acquisitions; information as of June 30.

1. Citigroup Inc., N.Y., $1.2 trillion

2. Bank of America Corp., N.C., $933 billion

3. J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., N.Y., $793 billion

4. Wells Fargo & Co., Calif., $394 billion

5. Wachovia Corp., N.C., $389 billion

6. Bank One Corp., Ill., $290 billion

7. U.S. Bancorp, Minn., $189 billion

8. ABN AMRO North America Holding Co., Ill., $149 billion

9. SunTrust Banks Inc., Ga., $127 billion

10. HSBC North America Inc., N.Y., $122 billion

11. National City Corp., Ohio, $121 billion

12. Bank of New York Co. Inc., N.Y., $95 billion

13. BB&T Corp., N.C., $90 billion

14. Fifth Third Bancorp, Ohio, $89 billion

15. KeyCorp, Ohio, $84 billion

Source: SNL Financial

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Lol -- actually I put that in because I recall reading a Patricia Cornwell novel where she stated that one of the reasons people in Richmond hate Charlotte so much is because Charlotte keeps stealing their banks.

The only book of hers I've read is Hornets Nest about Charlotte. If you haven't read it you should. She has a cool description of BofA Corporate Center at the beginning. Her family moved from Miami to Montreat, NC when she was 7 and she graduated from Davidson College in Huntersville, NC.

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Yeah, I think those Charlotte bashers are hating it's B of A stated clearly in the merge annoucement that the HQ would not be moving out of Charlotte. Plus, B of A as a lot invested in Charlotte, and it likely too big to be a likely buyout target, so I imagine it's HQ is safe for the time being.

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