Lebanon, TN - (December 17, 2015) - First Freedom Bancshares, Inc. (First Freedom), holding company for First Freedom Bank, announced today that the Bank has entered into an agreement to purchase three branches from Atlantic Capital Bank, N.A., the bank subsidiary of Atlantic Capital Bancshares, Inc. (Atlantic Capital) (NASDAQ: ACBI). The Bank has agreed to assume approximately $116 million in customer deposits and purchase approximately $31 million in loans and other assets affiliated with three branches located in Algood, Cookeville, and Gainesboro, Tennessee.
"We look forward to welcoming our new customers and employees to our expanding branch network," noted First Freedom's President and Chief Executive Officer, John Lancaster. "This acquisition provides a great opportunity to expand our footprint and offer competitive banking products and services to a broader customer base. We believe our new customers will be pleased with our personalized approach to banking, and our commitment to our people and our communities."
Subject to customary closing conditions, including the receipt of all necessary regulatory approvals, the acquisition is expected to be completed during the spring of 2016. Detailed information will be provided soon to all impacted customers and employees.
Olsen Palmer LLC served as financial advisor and Butler Snow LLP provided legal counsel to First Freedom. Troutman Sanders LLP provided legal counsel to Atlantic Capital while Banks Street Partners, LLC served as its financial advisor.
About First Freedom Bancshares, Inc. and First Freedom Bank
First Freedom Bancshares, Inc., through its wholly-owned subsidiary, First Freedom Bank, offers full-service community banking through three locations in Lebanon and Mount Juliet, Tennessee, and has plans to open a Donelson, Tennessee office in 2016. Organized in 2006, the bank has fueled its growth around creative solutions for small business, unmatched customer service, and a heavy focus on technology. First Freedom Bank was recently recognized by Banks Street Partners as the 3rd best bank in Tennessee and the highest rated bank in Middle Tennessee. The bank has approximately $318 million in assets, and has 54 employees and more than 1100 shareholders in Middle Tennessee. Additional information about First Freedom Bank can be found at its website: www.firstfreedombank.com.
Here are the winners of the Christmas Contest we had on our social media pages.
Jayci Etheridge, 2 months old, winner of our Christmas Contest for age group 4 and under.
Emily Schmidt, 6 years old old, winner of our Christmas Contest for age group 5-7.
Nghi Nguyen, 10 years old, winner of our Christmas Contest for age group 8-10.
As some of you may have noticed, we recently upgraded our website to a more user friendly and better performing version.
First Freedom Bank is always focused on technology, and the recent changes bring our site up to the latest security protocols.
Because of the recent changes, we would like to inform you that, if you are using an outdated version of your browser, our site might not work, or be fully functional.
Please take a moment to download the latest version of your browser. Whether it is Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, etc. that you are using, the updated versions are in line with the latest security protocols, and therefore will allow our site to work to its full potential.
If you need any assistance in this process, or have any questions, I am here to help. Feel free to contact me at 615-470-1310.
Personal Banker / Marketing Specialist
First Freedom Bank had a very solid third quarter. Through three quarters of 2015, net income is up 30.7% over the same period in 2014. During this same time period, our balance sheet has grown by 10.2%, fueled primarily by a 13% increase in the loan portfolio and a 6.9% increase in deposits. Comparing year-to-date third quarter numbers to fiscal year 2014, Return on Shareholder Equity (ROE) has increased from 12.06% to 13.16%, Return on Assets (ROA) has increased from 1.18% to 1.25% and our Non-Performing Asset ratio (NPA) has improved from 1.66% to 0.97%.
In late August, independent investment banking firm Bank Street Partners released their quarterly rankings report which reflected further improvement in First Freedom's performance from 5th (at 3-31-2015) to 3rd (at 6-30-2015). This made First Freedom the highest rated Tennessee-based bank in middle Tennessee.
First Freedom Bank has purchased a location in Donelson and plans to open a full service office in 2016, announced John Lancaster, president and chief executive officer. Previously a SunTrust Bank branch, the building at 2725 Old Lebanon Pike in the Donelson Plaza will undergo a complete overhaul to be in line with First Freedom's technological and service standards.
Upon completion, the 6,500 square foot office will have private offices for lending, mortgage and investment services. It will include customer safety deposit boxes accessible through state of the art hand print technology and a sizable conference room. The retail lobby will be equipped with Wi-Fi capabilities for customer convenience and demonstration of bank products. Externally, the office will offer 4 drive-through windows with video conferencing abilities, a secure night depository and 24-hour ATM facility.
"We are very excited about our entry into the Donelson market and specifically this location," stated Lancaster. "First Freedom's focus on small business solutions and consumer banking capabilities will be a great fit for the business-heavy Donelson area. We look forward to showing the community how we can add value to their business."
The Donelson office will be First Freedom's fourth retail location, and its first outside of Wilson County. The bank currently operates two retail offices in Mt. Juliet and one in Lebanon. All offices are supported from the bank's operations facility in Mt. Juliet.