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American Community Bank selling to Yadkin Valley

By Rick Rothacker
rrothacker@charlotteobserver.com

Elkin-based Yadkin Valley Financial Corp. this morning said it was buying Charlotte's American Community Bancshares Inc. in a deal worth $92 million.

American Community Bank will be merged into Yadkin Valley Bank and Trust but continue to operate in its market as American Community Bank. Yadkin Valley has done the same in previous transactions.

American Community Bancshares shareholders will have the right to receive either $12.35 in cash or .8517 Yadkin Valley Financial shares for each American Community share. The deal is expected to close no later than the beginning of the first quarter of 2009.

American Community shares were trading this morning at $10.46, up nearly 50 percent.

“Our partnership with Yadkin Valley Financial will provide us access to the capital, technology and expertise in the products and services that we need to truly take advantage of the outstanding opportunities in our market,” American Community chief executive Randy Helton said in a statement. “We have a high degree of confidence in the Yadkin team to join our two organizations and continue building a great North Carolina banking franchise that will best serve employees, customers and shareholders.”

The deal creates a bank with about $2 billion in assets. Yadkin Valley has 29 offices stretching from the N.C. foothills to the Triangle to the Charlotte area. American Community 13 branches from Union County to Cherokee County, S.C.

American Community is the third Charlotte bank to be bought out in the past year. Scottish Bank was purchased by Columbia, S.C.-based SCBT Financial Corp. and First Charter Corp. was taken over by Fifth Third Bancorp of Cincinnati.

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