Cadence CEO: Merger 'best strategy, opportunity' for stakeholders

The merger between Cadence and Trustmark banks was "the best strategy and opportunity for all of our stakeholders," the Cadence's CEO said tonight.
Cadence, a $1.9 billion banking institution headquartered in Starkville, will merge with Jackson-based Trustmark by the first quarter of 2011, officials said in a statement released late this afternoon.
Under an agreement between the two institutions, Cadence shareholders will recieve 0.096993 shares of Trustmark stock in a tax-free exchange. Trustmark will issue about 1,155,104 shares of common stock for all oustanding common shares at Cadence.
The transaction is valued at $23.8 million – or $2 per common Cadence share – working from a price of $20.62 for Trustmark shares.
Trustmark has offered to buy the $44 million in Cadence preferred stock sold to the U.S. Treasury in January 2009 at a price of $30.05 million in cash. Treasury officials have indcitaed a willness to sell their stock in Cadence "subject to the entry into definitive documentation acceptable to Treasury in its sole discretion," according to the statement.
Regarding Trustmark, Cadence CEO Lewis Mallory told the Starkville Daily News tonight that: "They've demonstrated over the years that they are a very customer-oriented bank. Their customers are extremely loyal, which obviously suggests something positive about the bank."
Mallory also said: "Cadence and Trustmark have been close for decades in that have operated together in a mutually-beneficial relationship for a long time. We've maintained a corespondent relationship with them for many years. We know and admire their management and their business style, so we know who we're partnering with and we think the community will find them to be a very good addition."

Editor's note: For additional details on the pending merger, look for a more detailed story on the Starkville Daily News web site and the print edition Thursday.