James Spence
Published:
February 24th, 2020

COLUMBIA, S.C. and WINTER HAVEN, Florida – Feb. 24, 2020

South State Bank and CenterState Bank jointly announced today that they have been named in the top 50 of Forbes’ 100 Best Banks in America.

“We intuitively knew we were putting together two of the country’s best banks with the partnership of South State and CenterState,” said Robert R. Hill, Jr., CEO of South State Bank. “This recognition is based on the commitment our teams have to providing excellent service to our customers and communities.”

“There are more than 5,000 financial institutions in the United States. Having both South State and CenterState named to the list of 100 best banks in America is indicative of the standards of excellence both banks have upheld,” said John Corbett, CEO of CenterState Bank. “South State was the only bank named to the list for South Carolina, and CenterState was the top-ranked bank for Florida, which speaks volumes about the two institutions.”

Forbes analyzed data regarding the growth, credit quality and profitability of the 100 largest publicly-traded banks and thrifts by assets. The ten metrics used in the rankings include: return on average tangible common equity, return on average assets, net interest margin, efficiency ratio and net charge-offs as a percentage of total loans. Forbes also factored in nonperforming assets as a percentage of assets, CET1 ratio, risk-based capital ratio and reserves as a percentage of nonperforming assets. The final component was operating revenue growth. Banks where the top-level parent is based outside the U.S. were excluded.

To see the full article and Forbes’ ranking of the 100 Best Banks in America, visit: https://www.forbes.com/sites/antoinegara/2020/01/22/americas-best-banks-2020/#6ddae19d4392

For more information about the merger between South State and CenterState, visit BankingForward.com

About South State

South State Corporation is a financial services company headquartered in Columbia, South Carolina with approximately $15.9 billion in assets. South State Bank, the company’s primary subsidiary, provides consumer, commercial, mortgage, and wealth management solutions throughout the Carolinas, Georgia and Virginia. South State has served customers since 1934.

About CenterState

CenterState operates as one of the leading Southeastern regional bank franchises headquartered in the state of Florida. Both CenterState and its nationally chartered bank subsidiary, CenterState Bank, N.A. (the “Bank”), are based in Winter Haven, Florida, between Orlando and Tampa. With over $17 billion in assets, the Bank provides traditional retail, commercial, mortgage, wealth management and SBA services throughout its Florida, Georgia and Alabama branch network and customer relationships in neighboring states. The Bank also has a national footprint, serving clients coast to coast through its correspondent banking division.


Forward Looking Statements

Information in this communication, other than statements of historical facts, may constitute forward-looking statements, within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements include, but are not limited to, statements about the benefits of the proposed merger of South State and CenterState, including future financial and operating results (including the anticipated impact of the transaction on South State’s and CenterState’s respective earnings and tangible book value), statements related to the expected timing of the completion of the merger, the combined company’s plans, objectives, expectations and intentions, and other statements that are not historical facts. Forward-looking statements may be identified by terminology such as “may,” “will,” “should,” “scheduled,” “plans,” “intends,” “anticipates,” “expects,” “believes,” “estimates,” “potential,” or “continue” or negatives of such terms or other comparable terminology.

All forward-looking statements are subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of South State or CenterState to differ materially from any results expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Such factors include, among others, (1) the risk that the cost savings and any revenue synergies from the merger may not be fully realized or may take longer than anticipated to be realized, (2) disruption to the parties’ businesses as a result of the announcement and pendency of the merger, (3) the occurrence of any event, change or other circumstances that could give rise to the termination of the merger agreement, (4) the risk that the integration of each party’s operations will be materially delayed or will be more costly or difficult than expected or that the parties are otherwise unable to successfully integrate each party’s businesses into the other’s businesses, (5) the failure to obtain the necessary approvals by the shareholders of South State or CenterState, (6) the amount of the costs, fees, expenses and charges related to the merger, (7) the ability by each of South State and CenterState to obtain required governmental approvals of the merger (and the risk that such approvals may result in the imposition of conditions that could adversely affect the combined company or the expected benefits of the transaction), (8) reputational risk and the reaction of each company’s customers, suppliers, employees or other business partners to the merger, (9) the failure of the closing conditions in the merger agreement to be satisfied, or any unexpected delay in closing the merger, (10) the possibility that the merger may be more expensive to complete than anticipated, including as a result of unexpected factors or events, (11) the dilution caused by South State’s issuance of additional shares of its common stock in the merger, (12) general competitive, economic, political and market conditions, and (13) other factors that may affect future results of CenterState and South State including changes in asset quality and credit risk; the inability to sustain revenue and earnings growth; changes in interest rates and capital markets; inflation; customer borrowing, repayment, investment and deposit practices; the impact, extent and timing of technological changes; capital management activities; and other actions of the Federal Reserve Board and legislative and regulatory actions and reforms. Additional factors which could affect future results of CenterState and South State can be found in South State’s Annual Report on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, and Current Reports on Form 8-K, and CenterState’s Annual Report on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, and Current Reports on Form 8-K, in each case filed with the SEC and available on the SEC’s website at https://www.sec.gov/. CenterState and South State disclaim any obligation and do not intend to update or revise any forward-looking statements contained in this communication, which speak only as of the date hereof, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by federal securities laws.

Important Information About the Merger and Where to Find It

South State intends to file a registration statement on Form S-4 with the SEC to register the shares of South State’s common stock that will be issued to CenterState’s shareholders in connection with the transaction. The registration statement will include a joint proxy statement of South State and CenterState that also constitutes a prospectus of South State. The definitive joint proxy statement/prospectus will be sent to the shareholders of each of South State and CenterState in connection with the proposed merger. INVESTORS AND SECURITY HOLDERS ARE URGED TO READ THE REGISTRATION STATEMENT AND JOINT PROXY STATEMENT/PROSPECTUS WHEN THEY BECOME AVAILABLE (AND ANY OTHER DOCUMENTS FILED WITH THE SEC IN CONNECTION WITH THE TRANSACTION OR INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE INTO THE JOINT PROXY STATEMENT/PROSPECTUS) BECAUSE SUCH DOCUMENTS WILL CONTAIN IMPORTANT INFORMATION REGARDING THE PROPOSED MERGER AND RELATED MATTERS. Investors and security holders may obtain free copies of these documents and other documents filed with the SEC by South State or CenterState through the website maintained by the SEC at https://www.sec.gov/ or by contacting the investor relations department of South State or CenterState at:

South State Corporation
520 Gervais Street
Columbia, SC 29201-3046
Attention: Investor Relations
(800) 277-2175

CenterState Bank Corporation
1101 First Street South, Suite 202
Winter Haven, FL 33880
Attention: Investor Relations
(863) 293-4710

Before making any voting or investment decision, investors and security holders of South State and CenterState are urged to read carefully the entire registration statement and joint proxy statement/prospectus when they become available, including any amendments thereto, because they will contain important information about the proposed transaction. Free copies of these documents may be obtained as described above.

Participants in Solicitation

South State, CenterState and certain of their directors and executive officers may be deemed participants in the solicitation of proxies from the shareholders of each of South State and CenterState in connection with the merger. Information regarding the directors and executive officers of South State and CenterState and other persons who may be deemed participants in the solicitation of the shareholders of South State or of CenterState in connection with the merger will be included in the joint proxy statement/prospectus related to the proposed merger, which will be filed by South State with the SEC. Information about the directors and executive officers of South State and their ownership of South State common stock can also be found in South State’s definitive proxy statement in connection with its 2019 annual meeting of shareholders, as filed with the SEC on March 6, 2019, and other documents subsequently filed by South State with the SEC. Information about the directors and executive officers of CenterState and their ownership of CenterState common stock can also be found in CenterState’s definitive proxy statement in connection with its 2019 annual meeting of shareholders, as filed with the SEC on March 12, 2019, and other documents subsequently filed by CenterState with the SEC. Additional information regarding the interests of such participants will be included in the joint proxy statement/prospectus and other relevant documents regarding the merger filed with the SEC when they become available.

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