Republic Security Financial Corp. of West Palm Beach, Fla., is on the acquisition trail again.

Less than two weeks after announcing plans to buy the Orlando and Tampa branches of Illinois-based Household Bank, Republic said it has a deal to acquire Northside Bank of Tampa.

Republic, with $1.2 billion of assets, said it would exchange 3.64 shares for each of Northside's. That is about $20 million worth.

The deal is expected to close in December.

In recent months Republic has also announced plans to buy First Palm Beach Corp. of West Palm Beach, Newberry (Fla.) Bank, and Beneficial Savings Bank in Tampa.

The expansion into central and west Florida "positions the company to reach new levels of shareholder value," said Rudy Schupp, chairman and chief executive officer.

Northside, established in 1989, has two branches in Tampa and $70 million of assets. Its founder and CEO, Jose Vivera, would become president of Republic's new Central Florida division.

Republic operates 35 branches in southeast Florida. It expects to have 92 branches and $3 billion of assets by yearend.

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