Jackson, Tenn.-based Hardeman County Investment Co. Inc. sought a merger partner as it faced various challenges, including regulatory burdens and liquidity for its shareholders.
Investment banking firm Olsen Palmer LLC was engaged to assist in reviewing potential sale opportunities. Olsen Palmer representatives met with Simmons First National Corp. management in Pine Bluff, Ark., on March 23, 2015, to determine the interest that Simmons might have in acquiring Hardeman County Investment.
After that, Hardeman County Investment and Simmons held discussions. But conversations and meetings were held with at least three other potential acquirers.
However, Hardeman County Investment dismissed the other potential acquirers when it became evident that the discussions and potential valuation of the offer being proposed by Simmons would be higher than what they were willing to pay.
Hardeman County Investment's talks with Simmons continued, leading to the announcement of their proposed merger on Nov. 17, 2016.