First Federal Lakewood to Reorganize Into Mutual Holding Company Structure, Reaffirms Independence


First Federal Lakewood, the largest independent mutual bank headquartered in Ohio, announced today that it intends to reorganize into a mutual holding company structure. This structure is expected to facilitate diversification, including the possible affiliation with smaller mutual banks. The mutual holding company structure will also provide a platform to capitalize on the bank’s financial strength and success, and offer First Federal Lakewood significant long-term operating efficiencies and increased competitiveness.

Subject to approval by its depositors and various regulatory agencies, First Federal Lakewood intends to form First Mutual Holding Co. (FMHC), a no-stock mutual holding company. This structure, which could be in place by mid-summer, is believed to be the first of its kind since the Dodd-Frank Act reformed the financial services industry nearly five years ago.

“We are proud to be an independent mutual bank and have no plans to convert to a stock company,” said Thomas J. Fraser, president and chief executive officer. “In fact, First Federal Lakewood expects to strengthen the mutual banking model by forming the new holding company.”

Fraser said formation of FMHC will allow First Federal Lakewood to remain depositor-owned, capitalize on its strong foundation, position the bank for future strategic acquisitions and opportunities, and continue the strong and steady execution of its traditional banking model of serving its communities.

Fraser emphasized, “As an independent mutual bank, we make decisions to benefit our communities and our customers – not shareholders. We’re excited to be able to leverage the strength of First Federal Lakewood to ensure mutual banking remains a strong and viable banking model.”

About First Federal Lakewood

First Federal Lakewood is the largest independent mutual bank headquartered in Ohio with assets of nearly $1.6 billion. With 19 full-service branch locations and 12 mortgage lending offices throughout Ohio, First Federal Lakewood provides deposit, lending, residential mortgage lending, cash management and investment services to individuals and businesses. Since 1935, First Federal Lakewood has been a stable community owned bank committed to deploying funds that foster local economic growth.