Zions Bancorp said late Tuesday that it is buying Regency Bancorp of Fresno for roughly $53 million of stock.

The deal would extend Zions' presence in California's Central Valley. It is scheduled to close in the third quarter.

The $230 million-asset Regency would be folded into Zions' California Bank and Trust subsidiary, which has just one branch in the Fresno area. Regency has four banking offices.

"This brings us strong management in Fresno that will help build business in that area," Robert G. Sarver, the chairman and chief executive officer of California Bank and Trust, said in an interview Wednesday.

The transaction would be accounted for as a pooling of interests. Regency shareholders are to get $22.63 per share on the basis of Zions' closing price Tuesday of $70. However, if its stock performance differs by more than 15% from a Keefe, Bruyette & Woods index, Zions said, the exchange ratio would be adjusted. Zions said it will incur roughly $4 million of after-tax charges related to the acquisition.

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