Canadian lender Bank of Montreal has announced plans to sell its shares worth $2.1bn (C$2.7bn) to fund the acquisition of Bank of the West.

The lender plans to sell over 18 million common shares at an offer price of C$149 per share.

“The bank intends to use the net proceeds from the offering to finance a portion of the purchase price for its previously-announced acquisition of Bank of the West and its subsidiaries,” BMO’s statement read.

The offer, which is being underwritten on a bought-deal basis by a group of underwriters led by BMO Capital Markets, is expected to close on 29 March 2022.

The common share will be offered for sale to the public in Canada, while in the US it will be offered on a private placement basis to qualified institutional buyers.

The underwriters have the option to purchase 2.7 million shares at the same price at any time up to 30 days after the closing of the offering.

The Bank of the West deal, which is valued at $16.3bn, is aimed at bolstering BMO’s retail operations in the US.

BMO plans to fund the remaining portion of the deal via its excess capital.

As of 30 September 2021, BNP Paribas’ Bank of the West and its subsidiaries had nearly $105bn in assets.

BMO expects the acquisition to bring nearly 1.8 million customers, 514 branches and expand its footprint in 32 states of the US.

Upon the completion, which is subject to regulatory approval, BMO plans to merge Bank of the West into BMO Harris Bank.