Arvest Bank to Close on Bank of America Acquisitions on March 22

Arvest Bank of Fayetteville announced Monday that it has received regulatory approval to buy 29 bank branches in four states, including Arkansas, from Bank of America Corp.

The company, which announced the deal in December, said it will close on the acquisitions on March 22, with "the vast majority" of acquired branches to open on March 25 as Arvest Bank branches.

All of the new branches are within or near existing Arvest markets, the company said. Per the deal, Arvest will take ownership of 18 branch locations, as well as lease obligations for 11 other branch locations.

The purchase includes "most deposit accounts and loans" associated with the branches. Officials with Arvest, the state's largest bank when ranked by deposits, have declined to reveal the price tag of the pending transaction. The deal was announced a year after Bank of America vowed to cut $5 billion in costs per year by 2014, cut 30,000 jobs and shed 750 bank branches.

"We had the opportunity, and it looked like a good fit for us," John Womack, chairman and CEO of Arvest's central Arkansas operations, told Arkansas Business. "We're excited to have this new customer base when it's approved."

The new bank branches are in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Missouri and represent about $750 million in deposits in total.

The agreement includes nine branches in Arkansas in Harrison, Hot Springs, Hot Springs Village, Mountain Home and Russellville. The deal includes 15 branches in Missouri, four in Oklahoma and one in Kansas.