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Pinnacle Financial to enter Atlanta market; hires Synovus exec to lead

Nashville, Tenn.-based Pinnacle Financial Partners Inc. is looking to enter the Atlanta market in 2020 with a de novo startup.

During the company's first-quarter earnings call, Pinnacle Financial President and CEO Michael Turner said that the bank has long been interested in the Atlanta market and may consider a de novo there.

The new bank in Atlanta, which will operate as a local bank, will add a fifth state to Pinnacle's growing geographic footprint in the Southeast. Pinnacle Financial hired Rob Garcia as its Atlanta president. Garcia joined Pinnacle Financial from Synovus Financial Corp., where he was a division CEO for its largest area comprising metro Atlanta and northwest Georgia.

Atlanta will be Pinnacle's largest market in terms of population size (5.9 million) and gross domestic product ($385.5 billion), the company said in a press release. The city had 85 banks holding $177.2 billion in local deposits, according to FDIC data as of June 30.

A search is underway to identify a location for Pinnacle's first Georgia office. More announcements related to hiring and other developments are expected in the first quarter of 2020.