UPDATE 1-United Bankshares to buy Centra Financial for $187 mln

Thu Dec 16, 2010 8:53am EST

* Deal potentially valued at $186.9 mln

* To enter Pennsylvania, expand in Maryland, West Virginia

Dec 16 (Reuters) - United Bankshares Inc (UBSI.O) said it will buy Centra Financial Holdings Inc for $186.9 million, giving it entry into Pennsylvania and boosting its presence in Maryland and West Virginia.

Morgantown, West Virginia-based Centra's share holders will recieve 0.7676 of United Banshares' shares for each share they own.

The deal price represents 17.3 times Centra's 2011 earnings estimate and 1.3 times book value, the company said.

With the acquisition of Centra, which has $1.4 billion in assets and 15 offices, United Bankshares' assets will grow to about $9 billion.

The transaction, which has been approved by the boards of both companies and has a termination fee of $7.5 million, is expected close early in the third quarter of 2011.

Shares of Charleston, West Virginia-based United Bankshares closed at $26.94 Wednesday on Nasdaq. (Reporting by Archana Shankar in Bangalore; Editing by Jarshad Kakkrakandy)