Equity Bank Adds Chief Information Officer and Treasury Management Director

John Blakeney and Michael Mange bolster Equity’s leadership teams

WICHITA, Kan., Aug. 30, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Equity Bancshares, Inc. (NASDAQ:EQBK), (“Equity”, “we”, “us”, “our”, or “the Company”), the Wichita-based holding company of Equity Bank, announced the hire of John Blakeney as Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer of Equity Bank, and the hire of Michael Mange as Senior Vice President and Director of Treasury Management of Equity Bank.

Mr. Blakeney will be based in Equity’s corporate headquarters at 7701 East Kellogg, and will oversee information technology, systems support, and project management throughout Equity’s footprint across Kansas, Missouri, and Arkansas. Jennifer Johnson, Executive Vice President and Chief Operations Officer will continue to manage deposit operations, systems conversions, customer care and electronic services for the Company. Ms. Johnson and Mr. Blakeney will each play key roles in defining and delivering Equity’s digital strategy. Mr. Blakeney will serve on the Company’s strategic leadership team.

Mr. Blakeney joins Equity after nearly five years in an executive role as Chief Operations Officer for CoreFirst Bank & Trust in Topeka, Kansas. Mr. Blakeney developed several key treasury management, cash and deposit operations, and electronic processes for CoreFirst, and led software engineering and information security processes throughout his tenure at CoreFirst. Mr. Blakeney served as Chief Information Officer for Commerce Bank of Kansas City from 2004 through 2010 and Group Vice President for Summit Service Corporation from 1997 through 1999 before Summit’s merger into Wells Fargo. He also has served as an information technology consultant and outside the banking industry, worked as Chief Information Officer for a directory assistance and technology company in Pennsylvania. Mr. Blakeney has an M.B.A. from Wharton Graduate School at the University of Pennsylvania, and earned his B.S. from Kean University in Union, N.J.

Equity also announced the hire of Michael Mange as Senior Vice President and Director of Treasury Management. Mr. Mange will be based in Kansas City, Missouri and will oversee sales and development for Equity’s treasury management product suite, which includes business deposit account services, merchant services, and receivable, payable, and online business services. Mr. Mange will manage a team of treasury sales professionals throughout the Equity Bank footprint.

Mr. Mange joins Equity after 15 years in sales and service roles for American Express, including client development for Global Commercial Payments, market development for Merchant Services, and Global Account Development for Corporate Services, managing three of the largest corporate client relationships in the American Express portfolio. Prior to American Express, Mr. Mange worked in sales and marketing roles with Sprint. He also is active in the community, serving as Co-Chairman for UNICO National Kansas City, providing scholarships for local Kansas City youth, and co-founded the Sam J. Pisciotta Foundation in 1997.

Brad Elliott, Chairman and CEO of Equity, said, “We’re eager to welcome dynamic and innovative leaders like John and Michael to our team. As we continue to grow organically and through strategic combination, it’s important for us to have talented individuals who will help strategically and functionally to support a growing company that serves three states through 37 branches. With the July announcement of our entry into Oklahoma, these individuals help us place even more emphasis on delivering our products and services.”

Wendell Bontrager, President of Equity Bank, said, “It’s important for Equity to continue to innovate, both in process supporting our mergers and combinations, as well as in delivery solutions and security enhancements for our customers. John will work in tandem with Jennifer Johnson to ensure we’re on the leading edge of technologies and services that impact our customers. Michael joins a talented and dedicated sales and service team that’s committed to providing unique, secure, and robust products for our business customers.”

About Equity Bancshares, Inc.

Equity Bancshares, Inc. is the holding company for Equity Bank, offering a full range of financial solutions, including commercial loans, consumer banking, mortgage loans, and treasury management services. As of June 30, 2017, Equity had $2.41 billion in consolidated total assets, with 37 bank offices throughout Kansas, Missouri, and Arkansas, including corporate headquarters in Wichita and locations throughout the Kansas City metropolitan area. In July 2017, Equity announced mergers with Eastman National Bancshares, Inc. of Ponca City, Okla. and Cache Holdings, Inc. of Tulsa, Okla. Following the expected completion of each merger in the fourth quarter of 2017, Equity will operate 42 bank locations in four states. Learn more at www.equitybank.com.

Equity seeks to provide an enhanced banking experience for customers by providing a suite of sophisticated banking products and services tailored to their needs, while delivering the high-quality, relationship-based customer service of a community bank. Equity’s common stock is traded on the NASDAQ Global Select Market under the symbol “EQBK.”

Special Note Concerning Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains “forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended.  These forward-looking statements reflect the current views of Equity’s management with respect to, among other things, future events and Equity’s financial performance. These statements are often, but not always, made through the use of words or phrases such as “may,” “should,” “could,” “predict,” “potential,” “believe,” “will likely result,” “expect,” “continue,” “will,” “anticipate,” “seek,” “estimate,” “intend,” “plan,” “project,” “forecast,” “goal,” “target,” “would” and “outlook,” or the negative variations of those words or other comparable words of a future or forward-looking nature.  These forward-looking statements are not historical facts, and are based on current expectations, estimates and projections about Equity’s industry, management’s beliefs and certain assumptions made by management, many of which, by their nature, are inherently uncertain and beyond Equity’s control. Accordingly, Equity cautions you that any such forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to risks, assumptions and uncertainties that are difficult to predict. Although Equity believes that the expectations reflected in these forward-looking statements are reasonable as of the date made, actual results may prove to be materially different from the results expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements.  Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from Equity’s expectations include competition from other financial institutions and bank holding companies; the effects of and changes in trade, monetary and fiscal policies and laws, including interest rate policies of the Federal Reserve Board; changes in the demand for loans; fluctuations in value of collateral and loan reserves; inflation, interest rate, market and monetary fluctuations; changes in consumer spending, borrowing and savings habits; and acquisitions and integration of acquired businesses, and similar variables. The foregoing list of factors is not exhaustive.

For discussion of these and other risks that may cause actual results to differ from expectations, please refer to “Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements” and “Risk Factors” in Equity’s Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) on March 16, 2017 and any updates to those risk factors set forth in Equity’s subsequent Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and Current Reports on Form 8-K. If one or more events related to these or other risks or uncertainties materialize, or if Equity’s underlying assumptions prove to be incorrect, actual results may differ materially from what Equity anticipates. Accordingly, you should not place undue reliance on any such forward-looking statements. Any forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date on which it is made, and Equity does not undertake any obligation to publicly update or review any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise. New risks and uncertainties arise from time to time, and it is not possible for us to predict those events or how they may affect us. In addition, Equity cannot assess the impact of each factor on Equity’s business or the extent to which any factor, or combination of factors, may cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in any forward-looking statements. All forward-looking statements, expressed or implied, included in this press release are expressly qualified in their entirety by this cautionary statement. This cautionary statement should also be considered in connection with any subsequent written or oral forward-looking statements that Equity or persons acting on Equity’s behalf may issue.

Media & Investor Contact:
John J. Hanley
Senior Vice President, Investor Relations

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