Star Bank, Cincinnati, the lead subsidiary of Star Banc Corp., said it has signed an agreement to buy seven Ohio bank branches and $100 million in deposits from Mid Am Inc.

Although the price for the transaction was undisclosed, Mid Am would recognize an $8.5 million gain on the deal, the banks said.

Mid Am, based in Bowling Green, is the parent company of Amerifirst Bank. It has $2.2 billion in assets.

The deal, subject to appraisals of the branches and other approvals, is expected to close in the first quarter. Three of the officers are in Cincinnati; the others are in Lebanon, Monroe, Montgomery, and Kettering.

Mid Am's president and chief executive, Donald P. Southwick, said the sale would be a repositioning move for the bank, to refocus its resources on its core Greene County market.

After the sale closes, Amerifirst would have six bank centers in Greene County and one in Warren County. The bank said it expects to retain all loans associated with the branches.

Richard K. Davis, Star Banc executive vice president and head of consumer banking, said the additional offices meet Star Bank's acquisition criteria in southeastern Ohio by "positively contributing to both current and future earnings, strengthening our market position and enhancing shareholder value.

"We are always looking to increase our current market," Mr. Davis added. "Our secondary strategy has been to target tangent counties in the contiguous states."

By yearend, he said, six more Star Bank offices will open, all in supermarkets.

Star Banc has $9.9 billion in assets and 259 offices in Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana. It has 88 full-service bank locations in southwest Ohio.

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