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ICBA Securities Announces Agreement with Vining Sparks for Capital Markets Services Community Bank Advisory Group

Washington, D.C. (July 14, 2011)—ICBA Securities, the broker/dealer subsidiary of the Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) that provides fixed-income investment services to the nation’s community banks, announced today that it has reached an exclusive agreement with its clearing broker, Vining Sparks, to provide access to the Vining Sparks Community Bank Advisory Group. The group provides ICBA members with mergers-and-acquisitions advice and bank-valuation metrics. The new division is headed by well-known investment banker and speaker Tom Mecredy. 

“ICBA Securities is pleased to expand our longstanding relationship with Vining Sparks to include this new investment banking service,” said Jim S. Gowen, Sr., chairman of ICBA Securities and chairman of Merchants & Planters Bank in Newport, Ark. “The new division will provide ICBA community bank members with the necessary services and metrics to operate and grow their business as they navigate through a challenging regulatory environment.  We are also pleased that it will be headed by Tom Mecredy, who is highly respected within the community banking investment sector.”

As the director of the Vining Sparks Community Bank Advisory Group, Mecredy assists community bank clients with mergers and acquisitions, bank stock valuations, financial structure analysis, regulatory assessments and negotiation support.  He has spent more than 30 years working with community banks, in particular advising senior management on mergers-and-acquisitions matters regarding the value of their franchise. 

Prior to joining Vining Sparks, Mecredy was a managing director of Howe Barnes Hoefer & Arnett and was head of the Alex Sheshunoff & Co. Investment Banking division for more than 10 years.  He has also worked at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago and has spoken before numerous audiences at national and state bank trade association seminars and conventions.  He is a graduate of Purdue University. 

“As director of the Vining Sparks Community Bank Advisory Group, I plan to focus on three key things—continue merger-and-acquisition practice within the firm, continue our valuation work with community banks and thrifts and spread the word about the good work we are doing for community banks across the nation,” said Mecredy.  “I’ve been fortunate to become acquainted with a lot of community bankers over the years. I want them to know we’re fully operational and ready to offer our services in connection with a potential merger or acquisition.”

For more information about the Community Bank Advisory Group and its offerings, visit www.icbasecurities.com.

About ICBA Securities
ICBA Securities, a wholly owned subsidiary of ICBA, specializes in providing quality investment products, services and education to community banks to help to create and maintain a high performing investment portfolio. For more information on ICBA Securities, visit www.icbasecurities.com.

About Vining Sparks
Vining-Sparks IBG is nationally recognized as a leading broker/dealer in serving the investment needs of institutional investors. Vining Sparks has offices throughout the United States and an international office in London with headquarters in Memphis, Tennessee. The firm has over 300 employees in cities across the United States. It has over 4,400 active customers, which include depository institutions, public entities and money managers. The firm also ranks in the top 20 underwriters of new U.S. Agency debt. Member FINRA/SIPC.