More than eight months after Sterne Agee Group Inc. announced that it is planning to acquire a community bank, the name of the bank has finally been revealed.
The Georgia Department of Banking and Finance said in its January newsletter that Birmingham, Ala., investment banking company has filed an application to acquire SUM Financial Corp. of Pearson, Ga., and its bank subsidiary, the Citizens Exchange Bank.
Sterne Agee's chief executive, Jim Holbrook, said in announcing the agreement with the then-unnamed bank back in May that it wants to own a bank so that it could offer its brokerage clients a broader array of financial products.
Founded in 1934, Citizens Exchange is one of Georgia's smallest banks, with just one branch and $28 million of assets. The bank, however, is very well capitalized and it is expected that Sterne Agee would use that capital to grow the banking business.
Sterne Agee has filed an application with the Federal Reserve Board to become a bank holding company. Company officials were not immediately available to comment Wednesday, so it's not clear how much the Sterne Agee is paying for the bank or when the deal is expected to close.