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BANK SOUTH, THE MERCHANT BANK ANNOUNCE AGREEMENT

 ATLANTA, Sept. 9 /PRNewswire/ -- Patrick L. Flinn, chairman and chief executive officer of Bank South Corporation (NASDAQ: BKSO), and Mark Bedner, chairman and chief executive officer of The Merchant Bank of Atlanta, announced today agreeing to a letter of intent to merge the two companies, pending approval of a definitive agreement by the respective boards of directors, and approval of Merchant Bank Corporation's shareholders and of regulatory authorities.
 Bank South is a $4.6 billion-asset multi-bank holding company with 131 offices throughout Georgia and Pensacola, Fla. Merchant Bank Corporation, a one-bank holding company, has $141 million in assets and 10 offices in metropolitan Atlanta. Both companies are based in Atlanta.
 The Merchant Bank was founded in 1987, and is a full-service community bank. In 1990 Merchant Bank Corp. acquired First Federal Savings and Loan, adding substantially to the company's mortgage portfolio which now exceeds $50 million.
 The Merchant Bank has six offices in Fulton County, two in Clayton County, one in Cobb County and one in DeKalb County. The main office is at Two Midtown Plaza, 1360 Peachtree Street in Atlanta.
 "This agreement with The Merchant Bank will allow us to serve in new households in our largest market of metro Atlanta," said Pat Flinn. "We are absolutely committed to providing them with the outstanding hometown service that they're accustomed to. We're also committed to adding value for The Merchant Bank and its customers through our convenient branch network, electronic and telephone banking and products and services."
 Said Bedner, "Joining forces with Bank South is in the best interests of our shareholders and our employees. We respect Pat Flinn and his management team, and we're particularly glad to join forces with an Atlanta-based banking institution."
 Under the letter of intent, Bank South will exchange $9.75 in Bank South stock for each share of Merchant Bank Corp., subject to some adjustments. The transaction is expected to be completed in the first quarter of 1994.
 Net income for The Merchant Bank in 1992 was $639,000, and $617,000 for the first six months of 1993. At June 30, total deposits were $128.8 million.
 -0- 9/9/93
 /CONTACT: Bo Spalding of Bank South, 404-529-4238/
 (BKSO)


CO: Bank South Corporation; The Merchant Bank of Atlanta ST: Georgia IN: FIN SU: TNM

RA-CF -- AT003 -- 0145 09/09/93 09:03 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Sep 9, 1993
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