Arvest Bank in Fayetteville, Ark., has agreed to buy Bear State Financial in Little Rock, Ark.

The $17.3 billion-asset Arvest said in a press release Tuesday that it will pay $391 million in cash for the $2.2 billion-asset Bear State. The deal is expected to close by the first quarter.

Bear State had 42 branches in Arkansas, Missouri and Oklahoma.

A group led by Richard Massey invested $46 million to recapitalize First Federal Bancshares of Arkansas in May 2011. The company changed its named to Bear State in June 2014.

DD&F Consulting and Kutak Rock advised Bear State, while Raymond James & Associates provided a fairness opinion. Hilburn, Calhoon, Harper, Pruniski & Calhoun and McAfee & Taft advised Arvest.

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