Summit Financial Group in Moorefield, W.Va., said its employee stock-ownership plan has acquired a stake in the company from a Louisiana bank.

The Summit Financial ESOP paid $2.43 million, or $10.80 per share, for 225,000 shares of common stock in the $1.5 billion-asset Summit Financial. The ESOP bought the shares from the $1.6 billion-asset First Guaranty Bancshares in Hammond, La.

Summit Financial provided a $2.25 million loan to its ESOP to make the acquisition; the loan is secured by about 208,000 shares of Summit Financial's common stock.

Charles Maddy, Summit Financial's chief executive, did not immediately return a call seeking comment.

Summit Financial operates 17 branches of Summit Community Bank in West Virginia and Virginia.

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