The Bank Slate


Talks between Republic First, investor hit impasse

Republic First Bancorp in Philadelphia has been unable to negotiate a truce with one of its biggest investors.

The $5.7 billion-asset company said in a press release that it tried to hammer out a standstill agreement with a group that includes George Norcross and Gregory Braca.

Republic First said the Norcross-Braca group wanted $3.5 million to cover various expenses, board seats and for Braca to become the company’s CEO. The company said it rejected the request.

Republic First said it proposed placing one person on the board, interviewing Braca for the CEO post, and paying $500,000 in expense reimbursement. The company said the investor group has refused to negotiate.

“Within the past few days alone, the board has reached out to … Braca to schedule an interview to evaluate him as a CEO candidate, ideally this week,” the release said.

The release followed a regulatory filing by the Norcross-Braca group that pressed Republic First to appoint a special committee to investigate and “take remedial action for breaches of fiduciary duty, corporate waste, unjust enrichment and other misconduct committed by the current board and all officers and employees.”

The investor group recently proposed buying a large stake in Republic First.

The company, which recently replaced CEO Vernon Hill with Harry Madonna on an interim basis, reached a cooperation agreement with Driver Management that resolved longstanding issues between those parties.

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