Trans Financial Bancorp plans to raise $30 million for future acquisitions and to capitalize subsidiary operations, according to a registration statement filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The Bowling Green, Ky.-based banking company has been on a growth binge. Last year, assets soared 67% after it completed three acquisitions.

"They have great intentions to grow the bank," said John A. Heffern, a bank analyst with Alex. Brown & Sons Inc., a Baltimore-based brokerage firm.

"Given their size, there are a lot of small banks in that market that are just perfect for them."

Paying Off Acquisition

The $948 million-asset bank also will use the funds to repay $12 million in debt associated with the July acquisition of Trans Kentucky Bancorp, which had $187 million of assets.

The subordinated notes are due by 2003. Interest on the notes will be payable quarterly beginning in January.

The notes are being issued in $1,000 denominations and will be unsecured obligations of the bank, payable out of its general operating funds.

Morgan Keegan & Co. and J.C. Bradford & Co. are underwriting the offering. An additional $4.5 million will be offered to cover overallotments.

Morgan Keegan expects to price the offering next week. On Monday, it began sales presentations in Bowling Green.

Room to Grow

Mr. Heffern said Trans Financial has plenty of running room for more acquisitions in Kentucky and Tennessee.

The company operates banks and thrifts in the two states and has 30 offices.

"Their market seems to be overlooked by some of the bigger banks," he said.

"NationsBank is not champing at the bit trying to get into Kentucky."

A Good Showing

The company has been a solid performer. For the first six months of the year, Trans Financial earned $4.6 million, up 9.5% from a year ago. Nonperforming and restructured loans plus other real estate owned were a mere 1.39%.

The company's largest lending segment is real estate mortgage loans, which made up 50% of its portfolio in 1992 and grew 84% from the prior year.

Earnings Held Down

Mr. Heffern said he expected better performance in the second quarter, but the acquisitions have dampened earnings.

Fully diluted earnings per share were 61 cents for the first six months of the year ended June 30, compared with 64 cents a year ago.

"They did have a disappointing second quarter," he said. "Rapid growth is sometimes difficult to manage. There will be these hiccups along the way."

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