Decatur First Bank Group Inc. announced Oct. 21 that the Georgia Department of Banking and Finance closed its subsidiary bank, Decatur First Bank, including the bank’s divisions — Lake Oconee Community Bank and Bank of Morgan County — and appointed the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) as receiver. Decatur First Bank Group Inc. is no longer the parent of Decatur First Bank.
In a virtually simultaneous transaction, Fidelity Bank acquired the operations and all deposits—valued at approximately $175 million—and purchased essentially all assets—approximately $191.5 million—of the Bank in a loss-share transaction facilitated by the FDIC and will continue to operate the Bank. Customers who have questions about these matters, or who would like more information about the closure of the Bank, can visit the FDIC’s web site located at www.fdic.gov, or call the FDIC toll-free at 1-800-430-7974.
Decatur First Bank, which had its main office on Commerce Street, opened in 1997.
In a prepared statement, officials of Decatur First Bank Group said: “While we ultimately were unable to save the bank in the face of unyielding market conditions, the Board of Directors worked tirelessly on behalf of the company and its shareholders and attempted every reasonable solution. In particular, over the last several quarters, our directors contributed capital to the bank and had been working on an offering of common stock in an effort to recapitalize the bank. Despite our best efforts, the continuing depressed market conditions prevented us from completing these transactions. It was our sincere pleasure to have served our communities over the past 14 years, and we continue to hope for the success of those communities.”
Former Decatur First Bank locations opened as normal on Saturday, Oct. 22, and Monday, Oct. 24, at their regular times and Decatur First Bank customers can continue to conduct banking business, including accessing their money by writing checks and using ATM or debit cards, according to a statement from Fidelity Bank. All outstanding checks will be processed as usual, and customers can continue using their Decatur First checks. Customers may use any Fidelity Bank ATM free of charge.