MANATEE — Two local banks received approval for a merger that is expected to strengthen their position when the economy recovers.
First America Bank, based in Osprey, and Palmetto-based Manatee River Community Bank received approval Wednesday from the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
The approval comes about five months after the institutions announced their intentions to merge.
The bank will operate as First America Bank, and will be headquartered at First America’s existing office, 2811 Manatee Ave. W.
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“The combined institution will be a strong community partner with the ability to offer more diversified products and services to better serve customers,” said Dan Hager, who will serve as chairman and chief executive officer of the merged First America Bank.
Allen Langford, president of Manatee River Community Bank, will be president of First America.
“With this merger, we will be very well capitalized,” Langford said. “This is nothing but an enhanced service.”
The merger will give the banks a combined $285 million in assets, and take care of Manatee River Community Bank’s nonperforming loans.
Manatee River Community Bank had $5.7 million in noncurrent loans through June 30, and $159.3 million in total assets.
First America Bank, with branches in Bradenton and Sarasota, had $150,000 in noncurrent loans and $132 million in total assets through June 30.
In September, Manatee River Community Bank signed supervisory agreements with federal regulators that required the institution to raise more capital.
The Office of Thrift Supervision said Manatee River Community Bank had participated in unsafe or unsound practices, and the bank’s status change from well capitalized to adequately capitalized led to regulators issuing supervisory agreements.
Those agreements, however, no longer apply to Manatee River Community Bank with the merger gaining approval. The transaction, Langford said, will be completed sometime between Oct. 15 and the end of the month.
The combined bank will not result in job cuts and will remain insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.
“There will not be branch closings or employee reductions,” Langford said. “Our banks have worked in the same market place for years. We both share a philosophy of building and sustaining strong customer relationships.”