Market Overview

Century Next Financial Corporation Announces Completion of Merger with Ashley Bancstock Company


RUSTON, La., Nov. 01, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Century Next Financial Corporation (OTCQX:CTUY) ("Century Next"), the holding company of Bank of Ruston, announced the completion of the acquisition of Ashley Bancstock Company ("ABC") and its wholly-owned subsidiary, First National Bank of Crossett ("FNBC"), effective as of November 1, 2018.  ABC was merged with and into Century Next immediately followed by the merger of FNBC with and into Bank of Ruston.

Under the terms of the Merger Agreement, shareholders of ABC will receive 1.8052 shares of Century Next common stock for each share of ABC common stock.

"By bringing our two companies together in this strategic combination, we have expanded our market area and enhanced our branch network," stated Bill Hogan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Century Next, "We look forward to the expansion of our products and services to the South Arkansas market area.  On behalf of our Board of Directors and employees, we welcome FNBC's customers and team to our family."

As of the effective time of the Merger, and in accordance with the terms of the Merger Agreement, three former directors of ABC, Herbert R. Hutchison, C. Maxwell Pope and Michael F. Webb, were elected to the Boards of Directors of Century Next and Bank of Ruston.

With the combination of the two organizations, Century Next, on a consolidated basis, has approximately $451 million in assets, $349 million in loans and $381 million in deposits.  Century Next plans to operate the existing branches of FNBC as a Division of Bank of Ruston through December 31, 2018.

Century Next was advised by Sandler O'Neill & Partners, L.P. and the law firm of Silver, Freedman, Taff & Tiernan LLP.  Ashley Bancstock was advised by Southard Financial, LLC and the law firm of Mitchell, Williams, Selig, Gates & Woodyard, P.L.L.C.

About Century Next

Century Next Financial Corporation is the holding company for Bank of Ruston which currently conducts business from seven full-service banking centers in Louisiana and Arkansas.  Bank of Ruston was established in 1905 and is headquartered in Ruston, Louisiana.  The Bank emphasizes professional and personal banking service directed primarily to small and medium-sized businesses, professionals, and individuals.  The Bank provides a full range of banking services including its primary business of real estate lending to residential and commercial customers.

Forward Looking Statements

This news release contains certain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, as amended. Forward-looking statements do not relate strictly to historical or current facts. Forward-looking statements reflect management's current views and estimates of future economic circumstances, industry conditions, company performance and financial results. They often include the words "believe," "expect," "anticipate," "intend," "plan," "estimate" or words of similar meaning, or future or conditional verbs such as "will," "would," "should," "could" or "may." Forward-looking statements, by their nature, are subject to risks and uncertainties. A number of factors - many of which are beyond the control of Century Next - could cause actual conditions, events or results to differ significantly from those described in the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements regarding the transaction are based upon currently available information.

Actual results could differ materially from those indicated in forward-looking statements. Among other factors, actual results may differ from those described in forward-looking statements due to: the anticipated benefits from the transaction are not realized in the time frame anticipated or at all as a result of changes in general economic and market conditions, interest rates, laws and regulations and their enforcement, and the degree of competition in the markets served by Century Next; the ability to promptly and effectively integrate the businesses of the companies; the reaction of customers to the transaction; diversion of management time on merger-related issues; changes in asset quality and credit risk; the inability to sustain revenue and earnings; and competitive conditions.

Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made. Century Next does not undertake to update forward-looking statements to reflect circumstances or events that occur after the date the forward-looking statements are made or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.

Contact Information:

William ("Bill") D. Hogan
President and Chief Executive Officer
(318) 255-3733

Company Website:

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