Community Bank Shares of Indiana (CBIN) in New Albany has agreed to buy First Financial Service (FFKY) in Elizabethtown, Ky.

Community Bank Shares will pay about $18 million in stock, or $22.33 a share, and will redeem about $12.3 million of First Financial's preferred stock from the Troubled Asset Relief Program. Community Bank Shares also said it would buy about $25 million of its own stock back from investors prior to completing the acquisition, at $22.33 a share.

The companies expect to complete the transactions by the fourth quarter. The $846 million-asset Community Bank Shares said it expects the transaction to be accretive to earnings per share in the first full year of operations, excluding one-time restructuring charges, and that all of its banks will be well-capitalized under all regulatory definitions.

First Financial has $859 million in assets, making this deal the latest to involve similar sized institutions.

"We believe this transaction creates a dynamic community banking franchise across the entire Louisville" area, James Rickard, Community Bank Share's president and chief executive, said in a press release Tuesday. "The acquisition... is the second transaction we have undertaken in the last 12 months. These activities are part of an integrated strategy to drive shareholder returns through both organic and acquisition-related growth."

Community Bank Shares bought the failed First Federal Bank in Lexington, Ky., in April 2013.

Sterne, Agee & Leach and Stoll Keenon Ogden advised Community Bank Shares. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods, Professional Bank Services and Frost Brown Todd represented First Financial.

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