Southern Missouri Bancorp (Southern Missouri) has agreed to buy Central Federal Bancshares (Central), the parent of Central Federal Savings & Loan Association.

Upon deal closure, which is anticipated in the second quarter of this year, Central Federal will merge with and into Southern Missouri subsidiary Southern Bank.

As per the agreed terms of the $24m deal, shareholders of Central will be entitled to receive $15.90 in cash for each share held.

The transaction already secured the green light from the two companies’ boards. It currently awaits regulatory and shareholders’ nod.

Southern Missouri President and CEO Greg Steffens said: “Excluding nonrecurring transaction-related expenses, the acquisition is anticipated to be accretive to earnings per share within six months of closing, but even after fully achieving our projected cost savings, which are targeted at 50%, accretion will only improve earnings per share by a negligible amount.

“While this is a very low-risk transaction for us, its ultimate success will be based not on these near-term statistics, but on our ability to meaningfully grow Central’s role in the Rolla market over time.”

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Central has a branch in Rolla, Missouri while Southern Missouri has 47 branches in Missouri, Arkansas as well as Illinois.

At the end of September 2019, Central and Southern Missouri managed $69m and around $2.3bn in assets, respectively.