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Nicolet Bankshares, Commerce Financial Holdings agree to terminate deal

Green Bay, Wis.-based Nicolet Bankshares Inc. and West Bend, Wis.-based Commerce Financial Holdings Inc. mutually agreed to terminate their previously announced merger agreement, effective immediately.

Under the terms of the deal, both parties had the option to terminate the agreement if the common share price of Nicolet Bankshares was below $62.00 per share at the time set for closing. Since the signing of the agreement on Feb. 17, the price for Nicolet Bankshares common stock has fallen more than 30% and has not traded at or above $62.00 per share for more than two months, according to a Nicolet Bankshares release.

The release said that Nicolet Bankshares and Commerce Financial Holdings believe that it is unlikely that Nicolet's stock price will reach $62.00 within the time period provided in the merger agreement, and they agreed not to pursue an agreement that is "unlikely to close."

To assist Commerce Financial Holdings with the costs of the merger agreement, Nicolet Bankshares agreed to pay Commerce Financial Holdings $500,000, and it will surrender 4,000 shares of Commerce Financial Holdings common stock it currently holds.