HOUSTON -- Nineteen South Texas branches of former United Savings Association of Texas reopened Tuesday as the newly chartered United Savings of Texas, F.S.B.
Thirteen of the branches are in Houston, with the rest spread between El Campo, Wharton, Harlingen, McAllen, Austin and San Antonio.
Lawrence Connell, president and chief executive officer of United Savings, said customers will not see any immediate changes in service or personnel following Friday's acquisition of the once insolvent thrift by New York investor Ranieri, Wilson & Co.
'The best way to explain it is that it's business as usual,' Connell said Monday. 'The only difference is we're newly capitalized and strongly capitalized.'
Ranieri Wilson invested $200 million cash and notes and the Federal Savings and Loan Insurance Corp. agreed to provide assistance worth $1.37 billion to recapitalize the Houston-based savings and loan.
United was the last ailing Texas thrift resolved before the end of 1988 under the Federal Home Loan Bank Board's Southwest Plan. As of Dec. 31, regulators said the plan had consolidated or closed 87 of the 104 insolvent Texas thrifts in existence when the cleanup program began in May 1987.
United is Houston's biggest savings and loan, based on about $4.9 billion in assets.
Connell, who was brought in to run United's predecessor as president just six months before its collapse, said employees spent the New Year's weekend 'catching their breath' to prepare for the reopening.