South Carolina-based bank acquires Charlotte community bank for $100 million

The holding company of the second largest bank in the Carolinas is set to acquire the parent company of Carolina Trust Bank, one of the largest community banks in the Charlotte region, for $100 million.

Carolina Financial Corporation, the holding company of North and South Carolina’s second-largest bank, CresCom Bank, reached a deal to acquire Carolina Trust Bank parent company, Carolina Trust Bancshares Inc., the companies announced Monday.

Carolina Trust shareholders will receive 0.3 shares of Carolina Financial stock or $10.57 in cash for each share of Carolina Trust, according to the terms of the deal.

The acquisition, which still needs to be approved by regulators, will create a bank with more than $4.5 billion in total assets. The deal must still be approved by Carolina Trust shareholders and is expected to close in the first quarter of 2020.

Carolina Trust Bank CEO Jerry Ocheltree will join CresCom Bank as president of its North Carolina commercial banking operations.

Carolina Trust operates 11 branches in the Charlotte region and has a loan production office in Salisbury.

The acquisition opens the door for Charleston S.C.-based CresCom Bank to further expand its presence in North Carolina.

CresCom entered the Charlotte market in January, hiring Robin Lyle, the former North Carolina market president at South State Bank, as its Charlotte regional executive.

CresCom had $3.6 billion in total assets as of June 30, 2018. It has 61 branches in the Carolinas, but no branches in the Charlotte region.

Following the announcement Monday, Carolina Trust Bancshares stock surged 32%, closing at $10.13 on Monday. Carolina Financial’s stock fell to $34.26, down 3.8% from last Friday’s close.