Two West Virginia community banks have pulled the plug on a planned merger because of a disagreement over price.

Horizon Bancorp, in Beckley, said last month that its letter of intent to buy Bank of Mingo has been terminated. Horizon signed the letter to acquire Naugatuck-based Mingo for $18 million in stock last January.

"I cannot speak for Mingo, but from our side it seemed to come down to price," said C. Duane Blakenship, vice president and chief financial officer of $1 billion-asset Horizon.

Officials for $65 million-asset Bank of Mingo did not return calls seeking comment.

Mr. Blakenship said Horizon is still deciding what to do next. In May the company announced it had hired Richmond, Va.-based investment banking firm Baxter Fentriss and Co. to "review its strategic options."

He said that hiring Baxter was merely Horizon's attempt to look ahead, and that the company had not heard from an interested buyer. "We feel we are sustaining a good growth rate that will keep us on an independent path," he said. "But we want to be prepared if we are approached."

Horizon is the parent of five bank subsidiaries with 22 branches in southern West Virginia.

Subscribe Now

Access to authoritative analysis and perspective and our data-driven report series.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.