Milwaukee developers who will buy 26 properties from Associated Bank have already forged new deals to sell or lease out about half, including with Waterstone Bank and credit unions.

Most of the properties are former bank branches that Associated decided to close after its acquisition of Bank Mutual Corp. Associated earlier this year opened bidding for the 26 properties, and Milwaukee developers Randy Roth and Dennis Klein partnered to win the portfolio.

Their efforts to market those empty branches to new buyers or tenants has resulted in 12 deals thus far, said Jon Thoresen, principal of Founders 3 Real Estate. WaterStone Bank has bought two, with a contract pending for a third. Banks and credit unions have leased the branches on South 27th Street in Milwaukee and South Main Street in West Bend, for example, he said.

“It’s been a good response,” Thoresen said. “It’s part of the hard work on getting the word out on the properties. It’s pretty well-positioned real estate.”

Read more in the Milwaukee Business Journal.