United Community Financial in Youngstown, Ohio, has agreed to buy Ohio Legacy Corp. in North Canton.

The $2.1 billion-asset United Community said in a press release Thursday that it will pay $40.3 million, or $18 a share, in cash and stock for the parent of the $320 million-asset Premier Bank & Trust. The deal, which is expected to close in the first quarter, values Ohio Legacy at 140% of its tangible book value.

Louis Altman, Ohio Legacy's chairman, is expected to join United Community's board. Rick Hull, Ohio Legacy's president and chief executive, will become a regional president, while Denise Penz, the seller's chief operating officer, will become head of wealth management.

Excluding one-time charges, the transaction is expected to be accretive to United Community's earnings per share by about 15% next year. It should take 3.9 years for United Community to earn back the deal's expected tangible book value dilution of less than 6%.

Raymond James and Tucker Ellis advised United Community. Sandler O'Neill and Vorys, Sater, Seymour & Pease advised Ohio Legacy.

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