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Wachovia to Acquire Westcorp and WFS Financial

September 13, 2005

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Wachovia Corp. has agreed to buy Westcorp for $3.42 billion to expand its auto finance group into a national business with offices in 47 states.

Westcorp owns 84 percent of WFS Financial Inc. and Wachovia will acquire the remaining 16 percent owned by the public for $490 million.

"This transaction moves our auto finance business to a new level and gives us access to a new set of customers," said Ben Jenkins, president of Wachovia’s General Bank.

The transaction will more than double the size of Wachovia’s dealer financial services business, making it the nation’s ninth largest loan originator. As a result, Wachovia will add about 8,500 auto dealer clients, about 920,000 individual customers and 19 retail banking offices in Southern California.

The combined auto finance business will be based in Irvine, Calif., and run by WFS Financial’s President and CEO Thomas Wolfe.

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