First Financial Bank Finalizes FNB - Wynne Acquisition, Adds Williams to Board
(El Dorado, AR) - November 1st was the closing date for the acquisition of First National Bank of Wynne and its seven locations by First Financial Bank of El Dorado, first announced in July 2019. First National Bank of Wynne has assets of $340 million, 80 employees and locations in Cherry Valley, Forrest City, Harrisburg, McCrory, and Wynne.
The closing of the transaction follows the filing of regulatory applications and approval of federal and state banking authorities. The actual merger and conversion of operating systems will not occur until the second quarter of 2020. Upon completion of the acquisition, First Financial bank will grow to $1.4 billion in assets, with just under 400 employees and fifteen branch locations in Arkansas.
“Since 1934, First Financial has provided community bank services across Arkansas and Mississippi. We’ll be expanding our retail footprint into northeast Arkansas and provide expanded account offerings, access to secondary market mortgage lending, and additional retail locations for our customers” stated Chris Hegi, President & CEO of First Financial Bank. “Finding the right partner in growing our bank was very important to us, it’s going to be a good fit.”
Additionally, First Financial recently announced the appointment of Sean Williams, former CEO of FNBW, to their Board of Directors. Sean will be joining FFB as an Executive Vice President / President of the Northeast Retail Market and report to Craig Mobley, COO. “Sean has demonstrated exemplary leadership by helping build a strong community bank brand and has played a key role in the merger process”, stated Hegi. “We look forward to working with Sean and his team as we expand our brand, ultimately adding shareholder value”.
When the acquisition was announced, Williams stated, “I couldn’t ask for a better partner for the First National Bank family than First Financial Bank. We share the same values and vision of community banking, and I believe this is a win for our customers and the communities we serve. I look forward to working with Chris and his team to make this a positive experience for our customers and employees.”