Morris State expands in southeastern Ga. with FMB acquisition

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Morris State Bancshares in Dublin, Ga., has agreed to buy FMB Equibanc in Statesboro, Ga.

Morris State said in a press release Wednesday that it will pay $23.6 million for FMB. The purchase, which is expected to close in the second quarter, allows Morris to enter Bulloch County in southeastern Georgia.

Morris State, the parent of Morris Bank, will have $925 million in assets when it completes the acquisition.

FMB's “bankers share in Morris Bank’s commitment to the delivery and value of true community banking," Spence Mullis, Morris Bank's president and CEO, said in the release. "That commitment includes treating customers as real folks and not just another account number. We are excited about this opportunity for our teams to combine and grow together throughout middle and southern Georgia.”

Brett Morgan, FMB’s president and CEO, will lead the Statesboro market. One FMB director will join Morris State’s board and two FMB directors will join Morris Bank’s board. Morris State also plans to form an advisory board of local business leaders in Bulloch County.

“We have known the Morris team for some time now, and we are pleased to partner with them in this strategic transaction,” Morgan said in the release.

“We are particularly excited about the opportunity available to our combined Georgia operations," Morgan added. "Like FMB, Morris Bank values and understands what it means to provide true community banking, with local decision making and high-touch customer service. This will be a great opportunity for success together.”

Stephens and Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner advised Morris State. FIG Partners and Troutman Sanders advised FMB.

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