BancorpSouth Acquires Louisiana Bank


TUPELO, Miss. (AP) – BancorpSouth has announced an agreement to acquire Monroe, La.-based Ouachita Bancshares Corp. and its main subsidiary, Ouachita Independent Bank.

It's BancorpSouth's first acquisition since 2007, the company says in a news release Wednesday.

BancorpSouth officials said OIB reported total assets of $652.5 million, loans of $477.8 million and total deposits of $549.7 million on Dec. 31, 2013.

Under the agreement, BancorpSouth will issue a maximum of 3.6 million shares of common stock plus $22.875 million in cash for the outstanding charges of Ouachita Bancshares. The terms of the agreement provide for a collar with respect to the total deal value ranging from $99 million to $112 million. If necessary, the share count will be adjusted downward or the cash consideration adjusted upward to accommodate the respective boundaries of the collar.

"This transaction will give us the opportunity to significantly enhance our market share in both the Monroe-West Monroe and Shreveport-Bossier City markets. It will also provide an opportunity to enter the Bastrop market, a market which we've not previously served," said Dan Rollins, Chief Executive Officer of BancorpSouth.

"OIB customers can expect to continue to receive the same level of personal service to which they have become accustomed, with the added advantage of additional BancorpSouth products and resources," Rollins said.

The merger has been unanimously approved by the boards of directors of both companies and is expected to close during the second quarter of 2014.

The transaction is subject to certain conditions, including the approval by OIB's shareholders and regulatory approval. The merger is expected to be completed by the second quarter of this year.

"BancorpSouth is a great cultural fit with an operating style that is very similar to that of our company. Both banks have a longstanding reputation for their commitment to the communities they serve as well as the customer-focused models that both operate. We believe these core fundamental similarities will make for a very seamless and successful transition over to the BancorpSouth team," said Kevin Koh, Chief Executive Officer of Ouachita Independent Bank.

OIB has 12 full-service banking offices in Louisiana, with six in Monroe-West Monroe, four in Shreveport-Bossier City and two in Bastrop. It also has loan production offices in Madison, Miss., and Natchitoches, La.

BancorpSouth has $12.9 billion in assets. BancorpSouth Bank operates 292 commercial banking, mortgage, and insurance locations in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Tennessee and Texas, including an insurance location in Illinois.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.