Business

Fidelity Bank purchases eight First Bank Florida branches

MANATEE -- Fidelity Bank entered an agreement with First Bank to purchase about $154 million in customer deposits as well as $32 million in loans and other assets.

Fidelity Bank will pay a 1 percent premium for the customer deposits in a deal that is expected to be completed in the third quarter of 2015.

"We welcome First Bank's customers and employees to the Fidelity family," said Fidelity's President, Palmer Proctor in a statement. "Florida is a very important part of our growth strategy and we look forward to serving the North Port-Sarasota-Bradenton MSA."

Proctor said First Bank's customers won't see much change in the service received at branches.

"What they'll hopefully see is improvement in the suite of products that we offer," Proctor said. "We've got more extensive deposit products and new technology and as far as the service side of things, we're keeping the employees in place and keeping the same level of service."

The assets include First Bank's eight Florida locations spread out over three communities; Bradenton, Palmetto and Longboat Key.

Fidelity Southern Corporation, the holding company for Fidelity Bank and its other subsidiary LionMark Insurance Company, provides banking, trust and wealth management services and credit-related insurance products in Florida and Georgia.

Missouri-based First Bank Inc., the holding company for First Bank, has locations in California, Florida, Missouri and Illinois.

Janelle O'Dea, Herald business reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7095. Follow her on Twitter@jayohday.

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