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Bank of the Ozarks to buy Summit Bank

By The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

This article was originally published January 30, 2014 at 12:41 p.m. Updated January 30, 2014 at 1:32 p.m.

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette/BOBBY AMPEZZAN - 2-2-13 Ross Whipple

Bank of the Ozarks said Thursday that it will buy Summit Bancorp Inc. in a $216 million deal.

Privately held Summit Bank of Arkadelphia operates 23 bank offices and one loan-production office.

"I’m proud of the organization we’ve built over the past fourteen years at Summit Bank and equally proud to join forces with Bank of the Ozarks," Summit Bank Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Ross Whipple said in a statement. "We are very pleased to partner with one of the nation’s most respected banking organizations.”

Whipple is expected to be elected to the Bank of the Ozarks board of directors after the deal closes, probably in the second quarter of 2014, according to the statement.

Bank of the Ozarks said it will announce the merger, the company's 11th since 2010 and the largest transaction in its history, at a 4 p.m. event at the Capital Hotel in Little Rock.

Little Rock-based Bank of the Ozarks is publicly traded and has about $4.7 billion in assets. It has 132 offices in Arkansas, Georgia, North Carolina, Texas, Florida, Alabama, South Carolina and New York.

Read tomorrow's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette for full details.

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