VyStar Credit Union to acquire Citizens State Bank
JACKSONVILLE, FL (January 15, 2019) — VyStar Credit Union announced it has signed an Agreement and Plan of Merger to acquire Citizens State Bank (CSB), a Florida state-chartered bank headquartered in Perry, Florida, with over $280 million in assets. Established in 1958, CSB has four locations: two branches in Gainesville, and branches in Perry and Steinhatchee, Florida.
After the transaction is finalized, VyStar will maintain all four CSB branch offices and all CSB employees. The acquisition will bring VyStar’s total number of branches to 69, and total assets to nearly $8.7 billion, serving more than 650,000 members. The transaction is expected to close midyear, and it is subject to standard closing conditions and CSB shareholder and regulatory agency approvals. VyStar and CSB management expect the sale to move forward quickly and smoothly.
In November, VyStar received approval from the Florida Office of Financial Regulation (FLOFR) to significantly expand its field of membership by 27 counties—more than doubling the original 22 counties—to include all 49 counties of Central to North Florida. This expansion included Taylor County, where CSB’s Perry and Steinhatchee offices are located. VyStar currently serves the Gainesville community with two branch locations with plans to open additional offices in Alachua and Ocala by midyear.
“The CSB acquisition and our recent field of membership expansions are significant milestones in our vision to bring credit union services to more people,” says VyStar President/CEO, Brian Wolfburg. “VyStar’s growth over the past 65 years has been organic, and that has served us well. Now, our recent expansions are taking VyStar into new markets, making it necessary to consider mergers/acquisitions to more efficiently serve these new markets.”
“We are proud of CSB’s 61 years of quality service, and we are happy to have found a financially strong partner such as VyStar, with a similar history and service philosophy, that can help strengthen our offerings for our customers and bring our employees to the next level,” says Gil Levy, CSB President/CEO. “This exciting combination will continue to support and expand our highly personalized service and commercial lending focus.”
VyStar’s Senior Vice President Strategic Initiatives, Ryan McIntyre, has led VyStar’s efforts in identifying potential strategic partners. VyStar was represented in the transaction by Howard & Howard Attorneys PLLC as legal counsel, and Skyway Capital Markets as financial advisor. CSB was represented by Smith Mackinnon, PA as legal counsel, and Hovde Group as financial advisor.
About VyStar Credit Union
VyStar Credit Union is the second-largest credit union headquartered in Florida and now serves over 800,000 members with assets totaling $13 billion. VyStar is the largest mortgage lender in Northeast Florida and one of the major employers in the region with over 2,000 employees. VyStar membership is open to everyone who lives or works in the 49 contiguous counties of Central to North Florida, 18 Southern Georgia counties and past and present military members and their families all over the world.