Times Staff Reports

Speaking of mergers--and premiums: Pacific Community Banking Group of Laguna Hills on Thursday agreed to buy two Riverside County banks--Bank of Hemet and Valley Bank in Moreno Valley--and then go public itself.

The cash offer for Bank of Hemet is for $58.50 a share, a 20% premium to the stock’s recent closing price of $48.88 on the Nasdaq Bulletin Board. The cash offer for Valley Bank is for $12.50 a share, a hefty 49% premium to the bank’s recent stock price of $8.38, also on the Bulletin Board.

Pacific Community says simultaneous with the acquisitions it will complete an underwritten public stock offering and a listing on the Nasdaq National Market System. The deal is expected to close in the fourth quarter. The combined institution will have assets of about $370 million.