OTC Markets Group (OTCM): Tell us about First Farmers. What do you want investors to know?
Gene Miles: Our organization was founded in 1885 and has continued the ideals and traditions of community banking. Our commitment to being the premiere agriculture focused bank in our region has allowed us to become the largest independent ”Ag Bank” in the Midwest.
OTCM: What were recent major accomplishments for the bank?
Mr. Miles: First Farmers Financial Corporation (FFMR) has achieved record earnings in 26 of the previous 27 years and continues to be recognized as one of the top preforming banks in the country with less than $2.0 billion in assets (American Banker). We’ve been recognized in the banking industry at both state and national level for our financial performance. More importantly, we serve as a recognized financial resource for the agricultural industry by providing specialized underwriting services for a valuable part of our economy.
OTCM: How does First Farmers differentiate itself from its competitors and what is your growth strategy?
Mr. Miles: We are quite proud of our continued commitment to the rural farm economy and our support of the respective local communities we serve. As the manner of delivery and focus of financial services continues to evolve, our organization has maintained a healthy M&A strategy in key areas of focus for the Midwestern Ag industry.
OTCM: First Farmers began trading on OTCQX in 2015. What has been your experience trading on OTCQX?
Mr. Miles: Our shareholders have clearly benefited from the convenience of centralized shareholder communications and access to the improved liquidity that trading on OTCQX provides. We have observed an increase in trading activity at prices reflective of our consistent strong financial performance.
About Gene Miles
Gene has enjoyed a successful 38-year career in the banking industry. Raised on a corn, soybean, and livestock farm in Central Indiana, and having spent time in his family’s grain purchasing operation, he understands the unique needs of agricultural clients.
A graduate of Purdue University with a degree in Industrial Management, Gene’s experience in both agriculture and finance allows exceptional perspective for oversight of the organization. Prior to becoming President and CEO, he served as Commercial Loan Officer, Compliance Officer, Investment Officer, Marketing Officer, and Accounting Officer. In this role as President and CEO, Gene oversees the general management of the company as well as stockholder and director relations. Since assuming the role as President of the corporation in 1997, FFMR has grown from $169 million to $1.61 billion in asset size.
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