Bank of the Ozarks to buy Houston-based bank

story from Talk Business, a TCW content partner

Bank of the Ozarks says it has entered into a definitive agreement and plan of merger with Bancshares, Inc. of Houston, Texas.

Under the terms of the agreement, Bank of the Ozarks will pay $23 million for all outstanding shares of Bancshares common stock, subject to certain conditions and potential adjustments. The transaction is expected to close during the first quarter of 2014.

Houston-based Bancshares operates eight offices through Omnibank, N.A., its wholly-owned bank subsidiary, including three offices in Houston, one office in San Antonio, two offices in Austin, one of which Omnibank is in the process of closing, and one office each in the Austin suburbs of Cedar Park and Lockhart.

At Sept. 30, 2013, Omnibank had approximately $301 million in total assets, $169 million in loans and $269 million in deposits.

“We are pleased to announce the acquisition of Omnibank, which has forged strong customer relationships with south Texans for nearly six decades. Omnibank’s offices substantially expand our existing footprint in Texas. We hope to achieve great synergy between Omnibank’s Austin-area offices and our Real Estate Specialties Group Austin loan production office, and between their Houston-area offices and our planned Real Estate Specialties Group Houston office, which we expect to open in the first quarter of 2014,” said Bank of the Ozarks Chairman and CEO George Gleason.

“For ten years we have recognized the growing importance of our Texas offices, and Omnibank’s substantial presence in the Houston and Austin markets should continue that trend. Today almost half of our outstanding loans and leases, excluding covered loans and purchased non-covered loans, have been originated by our Texas offices,” Gleason added. “This transaction, our second announced in 2013, will be our tenth transaction since March 2010, and will position us to further capitalize on growth opportunities throughout Texas.”

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Little Rock-based Bank of the Ozarks shares (NASDAQ: OZRK) closed trading on Monday (Dec. 9) at $55.78. The company’s stock has traded between $32.23 and $56.50 per share during the past 52 weeks.

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