CHARLOTTE, N.C. - The North Carolina Banking Commission approved First Carolina Bank's proposal to form a community bank pending a successful stock sale.

"The banking commission's approval shows that the state recognizes the need for a bank designed with small to midsize businesses in mind," said Wes Sturges, president of the new community bank.

Mr. Sturges said the stock sale is "going well," and the company is negotiating its downtown lease and hiring staff.

Pressley Ridgill has been hired as chief financial officer. He was formerly with Security Capital Bancorp.

First Carolina Bank will focus primarily on small and midsize business customers, offering a variety of services designed specifically for the entrepreneurial lifestyle.

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