KeyBank’s Acquisition of Laurel Road’s Digital Lending Business


KeyCorp was advised by Debevoise & Plimpton LLP. Laurel Road Bank was advised by RBC Capital Markets and Fried Frank.

KeyBank National Association today announced that KeyBank and Laurel Road Bank have entered into a definitive agreement for the acquisition by Key of Laurel Road’s digital lending business; Laurel Road’s three bank branches located in southeast Connecticut are not part of this transaction. Through the acquisition, Key will enhance its digital capabilities with state-of-the-art, customer-centric technology and will leverage Laurel Road’s proven ability to attract and serve professional millennial clients.

Laurel Road, based in New York City, has built a best-in-class student loan refinancing platform, which launched in 2013 and has grown rapidly, totaling more than $4 billion in loan originations to date. The end-to-end consumer lending platform offers a streamlined, transparent experience with customized loan products. In 2018, the company introduced an innovative platform for mortgages using the same secure lending technology to offer home buyers and owners a streamlined experience, from application to payment. Laurel Road has leveraged its differentiated technology to earn a strong reputation for providing high-quality customer experiences and solutions to targeted customer segments – such as healthcare professionals, lawyers and graduate students.

In addition to its advanced technology and distinctive client experience, Laurel Road has created a broad network of affinity partners through which it is a preferred provider of its products. This expansive platform includes partners across trade associations, member groups, and employers and aligns closely with Key’s approach to strategic partnerships.

In addition to the technology and business platform, Key is eager to onboard the Laurel Road team. “The management team at Laurel Road is truly outstanding,” said Gorman. “While operating within a bank regulatory environment, Laurel Road has been an innovator in online lending and experienced significant growth, a remarkable accomplishment under Gary’s leadership.” With the integration, approximately 140 Laurel Road employees will join Key. The employee teams will continue to be based in New York, Connecticut, and California.

The acquisition is subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals. Financial terms of the transaction have not been disclosed.

Debevoise advised KeyCorp with a team led by partners Jennifer L. Chu (Picture) and Gregory J. Lyons and includes partners Elizabeth Pagel Serebransky, Henry Lebowitz and Michael Bolotin; counsel Charles E. Wachsstock; and associates Sean Thomas Foley, Corina McIntyre and Jonathan R. Wong.

Fried Frank advised Laurel Road Bank with a team led by corporate partner Brian T. Mangino and included corporate partner Michael T. Gershberg; antitrust and competition partner Nathaniel L. Asker; executive compensation & ERISA partner Adam Kaminsky; intellectual property and technology partner Amir R. Ghavi; tax partner Michael J. Alter; intellectual property and technology special counsel Jason L. Greenberg; corporate associates Aliza Green, Paul C. Lee, and P. Ryan Messier; antitrust and competition associates Matthew E. Joseph and George L. Wolfe; executive compensation & ERISA associate Jaclyn I. Waters; intellectual property and technology associate Alana Berrocal Rodriguez; and tax associate Peyton R. Miller.

Involved fees earner: Michael Bolotin – Debevoise & Plimpton; Jennifer Chu – Debevoise & Plimpton; Sean Foley – Debevoise & Plimpton; Henry Lebowitz – Debevoise & Plimpton; Gregory Lyons – Debevoise & Plimpton; Elizabeth Pagel Serebransky – Debevoise & Plimpton; Charles Wachsstock – Debevoise & Plimpton; Jonathan Wong – Debevoise & Plimpton; Michael Alter – Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson; Nathaniel Asker – Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson; Alana Berrocal Rodriguez – Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson; Michael Gershberg – Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson; Amir Ghavi – Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson; Aliza Green – Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson; Jason Greenberg – Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson; Matthew Joseph – Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson; Adam Kaminsky – Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson; Paul Lee – Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson; Brian Mangino – Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson; P. Ryan Messier – Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson; Peyton Miller – Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson; Jaclyn Waters – Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson; George Wolfe – Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson;

Law Firms: Debevoise & Plimpton; Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson;

Clients: KeyBank; Laurel Road Bank;