MUNCIE — Three dozen MutualBank financial centers, which closed across the state at 2 p.m. Friday, reopened at 8 a.m. Monday as Northwest.

The weekend was spent converting accounts as Warren, Pa.-based Northwest Bancshares finalized its purchase of MutualFirst, the parent of MutualBank headquartered in downtown Muncie.

Northwest is keeping all 36 of the former MutualBank locations open, but 80 to 85 employees in Delaware County lost their jobs due to the acquisition, said Dave Heeter, CEO of Northwest's Indiana franchise.

"We believe that this transaction will help deliver value through increased operating scale and new market opportunities," Ronald J. Seiffert, CEO of Northwest Bancshares, was quoted as saying in a news release. "The combined strength of our institutions will allow us to better serve customers across all of our markets with a wide range of financial products and services, while maintaining the personal service they expect from their community bank.”

He went on: "Despite the adversity caused by COVID-19, our team was able to successfully close and convert the merger with MutualBank this past weekend. We are so happy to welcome 348 new employees into the Northwest family and look forward to servicing 70,333 more households from our 36 full-service offices in Indiana."
Copyright ©2021 The Star Press