United Financial in St. Petersburg, Fla., plans to buy First Security Bank in Sarasota for an estimated $5.5 million.

First Security, a 20-month-old bank with one branch and $24 million of assets, would keep its name and charter as a subsidiary of $223 million-asset United Financial.

The purchase would be United Financial's first since it went public two years ago, as well as its entry into Sarasota.

C. Peter Bardin, United Financial's chief financial officer, said the company wants to further expand in the Sarasota area in the next three to five years.

The deal was announced Friday and is expected to close by yearend.

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