The proposed sale of the last lender headquartered in Nevada County represents a nearly $8.4 million cash transaction.
Pending final approvals, the $67 million-asset Bank of Prescott will merge with the $1.6 billion-asset Farmers Bank & Trust of Magnolia. As indicated by the asset tallies, the deal involves lenders at either end of the spectrum in Arkansas, one of the largest and one of the smallest.
The acquisition will extend the Farmers footprint to a seventh county in south Arkansas. Farmers also operates in two east Texas counties.
Owned by Prescott Bancshares Inc., Bank of Prescott commands nearly 57% of Nevada County’s $103.3 million in bank deposits.
The only other competitor on the ground is Bank of Delight, with the remaining 43.2% share of local deposits, totaling almost $44.8 million.
The Bank of Prescott deal marks a return to the acquisition trail by Magnolia Banking Corp. after a five-year hiatus. In the months following a July 2014 announcement, MBC bought First National Bancshares of Hempstead County Inc. of Hope, parent company of the $310.3 million-asset 1st Bank of Texarkana, Texas.
1st Bank was consolidated with Farmers Bank in January 2015, a few weeks after the $31.8 million acquisition closed.
Eight years earlier, MBC struck a $13 million deal to buy Southern State Bancshares Inc., parent company of the $80 million-asset Southern State Bank of Malvern.
More than 80% of the Prescott Bancshares ownership is divided among four blocks of stock. Those shareholders are:
- James and Linda Franks of Hot Springs, 23.24% worth more than $1.9 million.
- John Brannan Jr., president and CEO of Prescott Bancshares, 21.35% worth nearly $1.8 million.
- Janet McAdams of Hot Springs, 21.11% worth more than $1.7 million.
- Bank of Prescott Employee Stock Ownership Plan, 14.44% worth $1.2 million.
Chartered in August 1904, Bank of Prescott was launched with $50,000 in capital.
Among the lender’s historical footnotes is a 1948 observation by its president, Thomas McRae Jr., who also was the namesake son of the 26th governor of Arkansas (1921-25): “It is easy to make money in the banking business. The job is to keep from losing it.”
Total Assets: $67 million
Net Income: $260,000
Location: One in Prescott
(As of June 30, 2019)
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