Eastern Virginia Bankshares, the parent of EVB, has agreed to merge with Southern National Bancorp of Virginia, the parent of Sonabank, in a deal valued at about $178.3m.

The merged entity will have about $2.4bn in total assets, $2bn in total deposits, and $1.8bn in total loans, and have 47 branches across markets in Maryland and Virginia, including the Washington, D.C. and Richmond, Virginia MSAs. 

It will have corporate headquarters in McLean, Virginia and bank headquarters in Richmond, Virginia.

Shareholders of Southern National will hold a stake of about 51.4% in the combined group, while the remaining 48.6% will be owned by Eastern Virginia shareholders.

Joe Shearin, currently president and CEO at Eastern Virginia, will lead the combined group as president and CEO.

Southern National chairman and CEO Georgia Derrico will join the merged company as executive chairman, while Southern National vice chairman and president R. Roderick Porter ll join the combined entity as executive vice chairman.

The deal already secured the approval of the board of directors of both companies. It is expected to be completed during the second quarter of 2017, subject to shareholders’ and regulatory approvals.

Commenting on the merger, Derrico said: "We believe this is a unique opportunity to combine two very different organizations in order to become an even stronger Virginia based organization with a diverse retail franchise and a dynamic lending based platform. We have known Joe Shearin for over nine years. 

“Through our mutual investment in Southern Trust Mortgage, which has been a tremendous success, we have developed a strong confidence in one another's judgement and banking capabilities. We look forward to operating a much larger organization in a cost effective way to increase profitability and shareholder value."