- Focus on U.S. southeast, fast-growing cities
- Sees growth opportunities in wealth management
- Plans 18 store openings in U.S. this year, 150 by 2027
TORONTO, May 25 (Reuters) – Canada’s no.2 lender TD Bank Group (TD.TO) will push ahead with its U.S. expansion by focusing on organic growth, after its M&A-led strategy in the world’s biggest banking market suffered a setback this month, a top official told Reuters on Thursday.
TD has made U.S. growth a key priority as it deals with a saturated market at home and had pinned its hopes on $13.4 billion bid for regional lender First Horizon (FHN.N), but that was scrapped after hitting regulatory hurdles.
With about $18 billion in excess capital, it now plans to focus on opening branches and building its wealth business in the U.S., Chief Financial Officer Kelvin Tran said in the first comments since the First Horizon deal was pulled.
“In the U.S., we are still a relatively young bank. We have a lot of white spaces there,” Tran said.
“We continue to make referrals to our wealth business. That’s still a new business in the U.S. … So lots of opportunities still there in the U.S.,” he added.
The bank has not ruled out other acquisitions.
“When we look at deployment of capital, it’s about what we can invest to drive organic growth, we look at whether there are opportunities for M&A … and then also opportunities to return capital to shareholders,” Tran told Reuters.
TD announced plans to buy back 30 million shares along with its quarterly earnings that missed expectations.
The uncertainty of the First Horizon deal has weighed on TD shares, which are down more than 7% so far this year, compared with a 3.6% drop in TSX’s banks sub-index (.GSPTXBA).
Some shareholders are willing to be