Carolina Financial Corp. (CFC) has signed a merger agreement to acquire First South Bancorp Inc., which runs 28 banks in North Carolina and has been in business for more than 100 years.
“We are excited about the opportunity to enhance our scale in North Carolina and to enter Raleigh and Durham, two of the fastest growing markets in the Southeast, as a result of this partnership,” CFC CEO Jerry Rexroad said.
After acquisition, CFC will have approximately $3.2 billion in assets and will be one of the largest community banks in the Carolinas.
“We are excited about partnering with a high-performing company like Carolina Financial," Bruce Elder, president and CEO of First South, said. "First South shareholders and customers will be rewarded as the combination of these two banks will provide superior financial performance along with an exceptional customer experience. We will leverage the new resources and products available to us through CresCom Bank to attract new customers and expand our existing relationships."
Elder will become the president of North Carolina banking operations for CFC's subsidiary, CresCom Bank.
The merger has been approved by the boards of both parties and is expected to complete in the fourth quarter this year, pending regulatory and shareholder approvals.
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