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FirstBank parent buying near Bowling Green

SEPTEMBER 18, 2019

Nashville Post
FirstBank parent buying near Bowling Green

$52M deal expected to close early next year

AUTHORS Geert De Lombaerde

FB Financial executives have agreed to buy a community bank based just north of the Tennessee-Kentucky state line for about $52 million.

The cash-and-stock deal between the parent companies of FirstBank and Farmers National Bank of Scottsville will bring to downtown-based FB Financial about $250 million in assets, $200 million in deposits and a five-branch retail presence in its fourth state. It is expected to close early next year and will grow FB’s asset base by about 4 percent.

Founded in 1923, Farmers National ranks seventh in deposit market share in the Bowling Green market. The bank finished the first half of the year with profits of $1.5 million, a return on assets of nearly 1.2 percent and a net interest margin of 4.08 percent. By way of comparison, FirstBank’s first-half ROA was 1.45 percent and its net interest margin 4.49 percent.

“Farmers National has been a pillar of the Scottsville community for almost 100 years, and that longevity is reflected in the quality of its associates, customers and reputation,” FB President and CEO Chris Holmes said in a statement. “We believe that Scottsville and Bowling Green are attractive markets to bank, and we look forward to supporting the Farmers National associates as they continue to build upon the strong foundation.”

Holmes and his team expect the planned acquisition to add slightly to FB’s earnings per share next year once deal costs are excluded. Holmes in late July said he was leading M&A talks on several fronts and, in announcing the Farmers National news, noted he hopes to have other news on that front soon.

Word of FB’s purchase plans came a day after the leaders of Brentwood-based Reliant Bancorp said they plan to pay about $37 million to buy the parent of Community Bank & Trust in Ashland City.

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