Citizens Alliance to merge with Sacred Heart bank

Clara City, Minn.-based Citizens Alliance Bank will acquire Farmers & Merchants State Bank of Sacred Heart, Minn.

Founded in 1905, the one-office Farmers & Merchants has $26 million in assets, $23 million in deposits and $13 million in net loans and leases, split largely between real estate and ag loans.

No personnel changes were planned, said John Gill, president and chief operating officer of the $800 million Citizens Alliance.

“Customers will continue to experience the benefits of working with a local community bank, with local decision-making authority with leading-edge digital technologies,” he said. “Citizens Alliance Bank, including its proposed newest office in Sacred Heart, is committed to the success and future of all its customers and employees, including the communities we serve.”

The deal is projected to close at end-of-day Thursday, August 16, Gill said.

Beth Brackett, chair of Farmers and Merchants, said that although the decision to sell the bank was a difficult one, she was pleased to find an acquirer familiar with the local community and the needs of the customers in and around Sacred Heart.

Citizens Alliance has eight branches in rural communities in west-central Minnesota and three branches in western Montana.