LAWRENCE, Kan.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Lawrence, Kansas based First Financial Bancshares, Inc., the holding company of Great American Bank, together “Great American,” and Lawrence, Kansas based Lawrence Financial Corporation, the holding company of The University National Bank of Lawrence, together “UNB”, jointly announced today that they have entered into a definitive agreement whereby Great American will acquire UNB.
Upon consummation of the proposed transaction, the combined company will have approximately $347 million in total assets, approximately $275 million in total loans, and approximately $281 million in total deposits based on financial data as of June 30, 2021.
“We are very excited about the proposed merger with UNB. Our companies share similar cultures that emphasize service to our customers, employees, and communities. The combination of the two remaining independent banks in Lawrence will create an even stronger surviving institution,” stated Les Dreiling, President and Chief Executive Officer of Great American Bank.
“We are proud to partner with Great American and believe the merger is an excellent fit,” remarked Todd Sutherland, Chairman and President of The University National Bank of Lawrence. “Combining with the only other independent bank in Lawrence ensures that our customers will continue to receive the same local service while also receiving competitive products and services provided by a larger community bank.”
The acquisition, which is subject to customary closing conditions, including the approval of Lawrence Financial Corporation shareholders and the receipt of all necessary regulatory approvals, is expected to be completed in fourth quarter of 2021.
Doug Compton, President of First Financial Bancshares, Inc. and Chair of Great American Bank, and Todd Sutherland, President and Chairman of Lawrence Financial Corporation and The University National Bank of Lawrence, negotiated the terms of the merger on which the definitive agreement was based. The Whitlock Company served as the financial advisor to Great American. The Law Offices of Daniel L. Watkins served as the legal advisor to Great American. Olsen Palmer LLC served as the financial advisor to Lawrence Financial Corporation and The University National Bank of Lawrence and delivered a fairness opinion to the Lawrence Financial Corporation Board of Directors. Fenimore, Kay, Harrison & Ford, LLP provided legal counsel to UNB.
About First Financial Bancshares, Inc.
First Financial Bancshares, Inc. is a Kansas corporation and the bank holding company for Great American Bank, which was founded in 2000 and has five convenient locations in four cities including Lawrence, Kansas; De Soto, Kansas; Kansas City, Missouri; and Lake Lotawana, Missouri. With its corporate headquarters located in Lawrence, Kansas, Great American Bank had approximately $256 million in total assets as of June 30, 2021. Great American Bank is committed to giving its customers old-fashioned banking services with modern conveniences, offering a wide variety of products to meet the needs of both consumers as well as commercial customers. For more information about Great American, please visit www.greatambank.com.
About Lawrence Financial Corporation
Lawrence Financial Corporation is a Kansas corporation and the bank holding company for The University National Bank of Lawrence, a national-chartered bank based in Lawrence, Kansas. The University National Bank of Lawrence was founded in 1988 and operates 1 full-service branch office. As of June 30, 2021, The University National Bank of Lawrence had total assets of approximately $92 million. For more information about UNB, please visit www.unbank.com.
No Offer or Solicitation
This press release is for informational purposes only and shall not constitute an offer to purchase or a solicitation of an offer to sell or exchange any securities, or a solicitation of any proxy, vote, or approval, and there shall not be any such offer or solicitation in any jurisdiction in which such offer or solicitation is not permitted.