Iberiabank Corp. in Lafayette, La., was initially willing to pay up to $24 million more than what it eventually agreed to pay for Florida Bank Group in Tampa.

The $15.5 billion-asset Iberia disclosed in a regulatory filing Wednesday that its original proposal, delivered on July 26, offered $100 million to $110 million for the $524 million-asset Florida Bank. The deal, expected to close in the first quarter, was valued at $86 million when it was announced on Oct. 3.

An unnamed Florida Bank investor helped gets talks started, asking Susan Martinez, the bank's president and chief executive, in late June if she would meet with Iberia representatives. Martinez called John Davis, Iberia's director of financial strategy and mergers and acquisitions. Within a few weeks, Martinez and another First Bank executive had dinner with Davis and Daryl Byrd, Iberia's president and CEO.

Iberia conducted due diligence before reducing its price below $100 million in mid-August. A few days later, Florida Bank terminated an exclusivity agreement with Iberia and began looking at other suitors.

A pair of unnamed banks, described in the filing has having an interest in Florida M&A, talked to Florida Bank, but the prices they threw out were inferior to Iberia's proposal.

Florida Bank and Iberia resumed talks in early September, with talks focusing on a price range of $81 million to $103 million, based on the Iberia's stock price.

Martinez is the only executive at Florida Bank with an employment agreement. The filing said Martinez, set to become Iberia's Florida regional president, agreed to a one-year contract that will pay her a $400,000 salary and is renewable in one-year increments.

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