The Wilton Bank officially became part of the Bankwell Bank family today, following approval by the Connecticut Department of Banking of the merger of The Wilton Bank with and into Bankwell Bank. The FDIC also state it has no objections to the merger, successfully completing all regulatory required approvals. The announcement was made by parent company Bankwell Financial Group, Inc., based in New Canaan.

A press release issued by the company said upon completion of the merger, to be effective today, the acquisition will increase Bankwell’s assets by approximately $71.4 million, including $65 million in deposits. In connection with the merger, the company is issuing aggregate cash of approximately $5 million to Wilton Bank shareholders. Bankwell projects the acquisition of The Wilton Bank to be accretive to earnings in the first year of the combined operations.

Bankwell Financial Group management team and board of directors, led by Peyton R. Patterson, President and CEO, will continue to lead the combined team of professional bankers. Charles Howell, former CEO of The Wilton Bank, will leave the company.

“We are proud of the hard work accomplished as we prepare to finalize our first acquisition and we look forward to the successful blending of our two like-minded community banks -— each a stand-out for its excellent customer service and focus on community,” Ms. Patterson said. “The merger completes an important step in our long-term strategy to expand our presence in Fairfield County. This growth enhances opportunities for businesses, customer relationships, employees and the communities we serve.”

Bankwell will bring new products and services to The Wilton Bank client base and the Wilton community, including investment services. With its competitive pricing and $8 million lending capability, Bankwell also brings a dedicated team of commercial lenders to support local business needs, the press release said. More information about Bankwell can be found at mybankwell.com.

Keefe, Bruyette & Woods, a Stifel Company, served as financial adviser to Bankwell Financial Group, Inc. and Sandler O’Neill & Partners, L.P. served as financial adviser to The Wilton Bank. Serving as legal adviser to Bankwell was Robinson & Cole, LLP and to The Wilton Bank, Hinkley, Allen & Snyder, LLP.

Bankwell Financial Group is a federally regulated bank holding company located in New Canaan. Bankwell Financial Group operates one state-chartered commercial bank subsidiary, Bankwell Bank. This bank was recently created from the merger of The Bank of New Canaan and The Bank of Fairfield. Bankwell Bank operates branches in New Canaan, Fairfield, Stamford and a loan production office in Bridgeport. Bankwell Bank is FDIC-insured and provides a full range of banking services to commercial and consumer customers, primarily located within its community and the surrounding area.

The Wilton Bank is a state-chartered commercial bank whose deposits are insured by the FDIC. The Wilton Bank provides a full range of banking services to commercial and consumer customers, primarily located within its community and the surrounding area.