Ameris Making Play to Become Dominant Community Bank in Southeast

Ameris Bancorp, parent company of Ameris Bank, a community bank with locations throughout the southeastern United States, has just closed on a deal to purchase all outstanding shares of M&S Banks of Florida. This entails Ameris acquiring 13 M&S Bank locations spread across North Central Florida with the majority being located in Gainesville. These locations, along with the acquisition of an additional 18 Bank of America branches in North Florida and South Georgia, give Ameris a good presence throughout the Southeast. These acquisitions bring Ameris to a total of 104 locations.

Edwin W. Hortman Jr., President and CEO of Ameris Bancorp, stated that he is excited at the opportunities that this purchase will bring. It allows for a more efficient penetration of the North Florida market by acquiring what he sees as the preeminent community bank in the area. The president and CEO of M&S, Tom Mallini, is also content with the deal. He believes it will allow M&S customers enhanced and more wide-ranging access to certain resources such as e-banking, treasury and cash management services, and mortgage financing services. Ameris is funding the purchase through the sale of 5.3 million shares with estimated proceed of $114.5 million.

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Virginia MacKoul

Virginia is a graduate from the University of Florida's College of Design Construction and Planning with a degree in Sustainability and the Built Environment, and a minor in Urban Regional Planning. Virginia joined the Front Street team in 2011, as an intern. Upon graduation, Virginia joined the Front Street team full-time as the Director of Client Services. Ms. MacKoul’s addition furthers Front Street’s continued growth and expansion within Gainesville and other North Central Florida markets. She was promoted to Director of Marketing in 2014 and now manages the firm’s team of interns and oversees all marketing and branding activity. Virginia was born in Boston and moved to Lee County, Florida in 1997. Virginia graduated her high school's International Baccalaureate program and started at the University of Florida with a focus on Architecture. Virginia shares Front Street's passion of giving back to the community and those in need. Virginia's hobbies include photography, cooking, football, movies, music, and spending time with her dog, Brinkley.

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