NBT Bancorp and Alliance Financial Corporation announced today that they have entered into an agreement under which Alliance will merge into NBT.

The merger is valued at approximately $233.4 million and is expected to close in the second quarter of 2013 pending the approval of regulators and stockholders.  The merger was approved unanimously by the boards of directors of both companies.

Both companies have strong roots in central New York with NBT's headquarters in Norwich and Alliance based out of Buffalo.  NBT has 97 New York branches and Alliance provides services through 28 offices.  NBT also has operations in Vermont, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and New Hampshire.

NBT President and CEO Martin Dietrich says the merger is a great accomplishment for the company because it will greatly extend the banks blueprint, especially into the Greater Syracuse area.