Armor Bank to purchase Farmers & Merchants Marianna branch

by Talk Business & Politics staff ([email protected]) 2,500 views 

Armor Bank and Stuttgart-based Farmers and Merchants Bank have announced that a definitive agreement has been signed for Armor Bank to purchase the Marianna branch of Farmers and Merchants Bank pending regulatory approvals.

The transaction is anticipated to close early next year. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Armor Bank will acquire Farmers and Merchants Bank’s physical branch at 33 East Main Street in Marianna as well as the branch’s deposit and loan accounts. As of August 31, 2020, the Marianna branch has approximately $53 million in deposits, which is 50% of the deposits in Lee County, according to the FDIC website.

Armor Bank’s holding company, Big Creek Bancshares, is headquartered in Moro, also in Lee County.

“We are extremely pleased to be able to serve this great community that we know so well,” said Armor Bank Board Chairman Mark Waldrip. “At a time of tremendous expansion in the life of Armor Bank, it is gratifying that this growth originates right here at home. We look forward to providing a simplified, customer-focused banking experience that existing Armor Bank customers have come to expect.”

Both banks are working together to provide a smooth transition for all customers and employees of the Marianna branch. Customers will receive additional information in the near future and no effect will be had on accounts held at the branch.

“It has been a pleasure for Farmers and Merchants Bank to provide financial products to Marianna and Lee County for over eleven and a half years,” said Farmers & Merchants President and CEO Gary Hudson. “We are so proud of our staff and the service that they have been able to provide to our loyal customer base. We are confident that the Armor team will continue to provide outstanding products and service to a very loyal market.”

Armor Bank President and CEO Chad May further noted the existing connections between Armor Bank and Marianna including Armor Bank Director Steve Edwards, who is from Marianna. “The Waldrip and Edwards families have deep roots in Lee County. This is home for them.”

Armor Bank is a full-service community bank with $180 million in assets as of June 30, 2020. The Marianna location will give the bank six full-service retail locations in Arkansas.

The bank said it is planning to open its first retail location in Jonesboro later this year.

Farmers and Merchants Bank has approximately $1.6 billion in total assets. It has 26 branches throughout Arkansas, Farmers and Merchants Bank’s holdings also include banking centers operating under the name The Bank of Fayetteville.