ConnectOne Bancorp, Inc. Agrees to Acquire Boefly

Englewood Cliffs-based ConnectOne Bancorp, Inc., parent company of ConnectOne Bank, has entered into an Asset Purchase and Assumption Agreement with BoeFly, LLC, a New York City-based, privately held company, whose online business lending marketplace and suite of technology products specializes in connecting franchisors, small business owners, lenders and professional loan brokers across the United States.

Michael Rozman, the chief executive officer and a co-founder of BoeFly, will be joining the company as president of ConnectOne’s BoeFly Division together with BoeFly’s current employees.  BoeFly will continue to operate within ConnectOne as an independent brand and the Company is committed to maintaining and building upon the business model and relationships that have supported its success. BoeFly’s proprietary lending marketplace utilizes dynamic compatibility technology to connect franchisees and small business owners seeking financing to funding sources. As a leader in franchise lending solutions, BoeFly has supported franchisees from more than 600 unique franchise brands with proven tools like bVerify which top brands use to diligence franchise applicants and the patented bQual™ to assist current and future franchisees seeking financing education. Franchisees who utilize bQual receive real-time access to their credit scores including the SBSS score required by all SBA lenders and an online financial education tool increasing their likelihood of success.

Utilizing a diverse base of participating banks and finance companies, BoeFly’s online lending platform has supported more than $5 billion of financing transactions including franchise financing, small business loans, loan sales and commercial financing, while also generating revenue through referral fees and subscription fees from its network of lenders, franchisors, loan brokers and borrowers.

“Similar to ConnectOne, BoeFly is built on a mission of offering frictionless, efficient solutions for small to midsized businesses, and this partnership represents a unique opportunity to leverage the digital foundation we have built. In addition, the transaction provides ConnectOne an avenue to expand and diversify noninterest income, while also enhancing our recently established SBA line of business. Given these synergies, the addition of BoeFly’s innovative online platform and entrepreneurial team are a natural fit for ConnectOne,” commented Frank Sorrentino, ConnectOne’s chairman and chief executive officer.

Michael Rozman stated, “We’re honored to join the ConnectOne team and are excited that our unparalleled relationships with a diverse group of lending institutions, commercial lenders, franchisors and professional loan brokers will remain intact. ConnectOne’s management team has demonstrated the ability to build a high-performing, growth company and we look forward to leveraging their experience as we continue to invest in market-leading solutions for our clients.”

The acquisition of BoeFly is subject to customary closing conditions and closing is expected to occur in the second quarter 2019. The two companies anticipate a smooth transition for BoeFly’s clients, partners, and participating lenders. Notwithstanding the notable strategic benefits of the acquisition and expansion of ConnectOne’s digital strategy, the Company expects the acquisition to have no material impact on its 2019 financial results.

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