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BARNETT COMPLETES FIRST FLORIDA BANK CONVERSION

 JACKSONVILLE, Fla., March 24 /PRNewswire/ -- Barnett Banks, Inc. (NYSE: BBI) today said it has completed the operational conversion of the $5.5-billion-asset First Florida Bank, N.A. The process, begun Friday (March 19) was substantially complete by Tuesday, with the merging of First Florida into 14 Barnett banks serving 20 counties.
 "Recognizing the value of operating common systems, our conversion included a switchover of data processing, consolidation of redundant locations and a change to Barnett products and services," said Charles E. Rice, Barnett's chairman and chief executive officer.
 "The merger supports and is consistent with our mission for the future, which is to survive and flourish as a highly profitable, independent financial services organization operating in a limited regional marketplace," Rice said.
 A major component of the conversion was to close 98 overlapping First Florida and Barnett locations while converting and retaining 46 former First Florida offices. Barnett has the largest office network in Florida, now totaling 593 locations. It has an additional 43 locations in Georgia.
 The company's Florida deposit market share of 28 percent now ranks it first, second or third in 44 of 45 Florida counties. Barnett is also the leader in all major core banking businesses in the state.
 With $39 billion in assets, Barnett is the 18th-largest financial institution in the United States. Its stock (BBI) is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
 -0- 3/24/93
 /CONTACT: Bob Stickler (media), 904-791-5437, or home, 904-396-9284, or Helen Rowan (analysts), 904-791-7627, or home, 904-272-6915, both of Barnett Banks, Inc./
 (BBI)


CO: Barnett Banks, Inc.; First Florida Bank, N.A. ST: Florida IN: FIN SU: TNM

AW-JB -- FL005 -- 9081 03/24/93 11:49 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Mar 24, 1993
Words:279
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