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Trustmark buying BancTrust in $55.4M transaction

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) -- Trustmark Corp. is buying BancTrust Financial Group Inc. in a stock deal valued at approximately $55.4 million, helping the bank to expand in Florida and Alabama.

The deal, announced Tuesday, values BancTrust stock at $3.08 per share based on Trustmark's closing stock price of $24.66 Friday. This is a 62 percent premium to BancTrust's closing price of $1.90 on Friday.

Each BancTrust stockholder will receive 0.125 shares of Trustmark common stock for each BancTrust share they own.

Trustmark CEO Gerard Host said the deal would add to the bank's earnings per share in 2013 and later.

BancTrust, which is based in Mobile, Ala., has 49 offices in Alabama and Florida, with $1.3 billion in loans and $1.8 billion in deposits as of March 31. Trustmark, based in Jackson, Miss., has more than 170 offices in Florida, Mississippi, Tennessee and Texas.

Trustmark also said it plans to buy back $50 million in preferred stock and warrants from the Treasury Department. The stock and warrants were issued by BancTrust as part of the government's bank bailout during the 2008 financial crisis.

Both companies' boards have unanimously approved the transaction, which is targeted to close in the fourth quarter. The acquisition still needs the approval of BancTrust shareholders.