United Community Banks in Blairsville, Ga., has agreed to buy MoneyTree Corp. in Lenoir City, Tenn.

The $7.6 billion-asset United will pay $52 million in cash and stock for MoneyTree, the holding company for the $425 million-asset First National Bank. The transaction is expected to close in the second quarter.

United said in a press release Tuesday that it expects the transaction to be slightly accretive to its fully diluted earnings per share this year, and 3% accretive in 2016 and 2017. The purchase is expected to be less than 1% dilutive to United's tangible book value per share with an earn-back period of less than three years, including one-time transaction costs.

""We are excited to have the opportunity to expand our footprint in East Tennessee by joining forces with a strong, well-established community bank," Jimmy Tallent, United's president and chief executive, said in the release. "This merger will allow us to expand into key markets in East Tennessee, including Cleveland, Lenoir City and Knoxville."

Sterne, Agee & Leach and Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz advised MoneyTree. Morgan Stanley and Troutman Sanders advised United.

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