Security Savings Bank in Southport, N.C., said that it has hired an Atlanta firm to help it explore strategic option, including a possible sale.

Kenneth Mabe, the savings bank's chief executive, said in a Monday press release that Banks Street Partners could also recommend a modified or supervisory conversion. Under a supervisory conversion, a regulator arranges the sale of an institution to someone else.

The $344 million-asset savings bank has11 branches in North Carolina, with most along the coast.

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