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BARNETT TO BUY BANK SOUTH'S PENSACOLA UNIT; BANK SOUTH TO BUY BARNETT'S ATLANTA AREA BANKS

 JACKSONVILLE, Fla. and ATLANTA, April 15 /PRNewswire/ -- Barnett Banks, Inc. (NYSE: BBI) and Bank South Corporation (NASDAQ-NMS: BKSO) today announced they have reached an agreement in principle on the purchase of Barnett's Atlanta banking franchise by Bank South and of Bank South's Pensacola banking franchise by Barnett.
 As now proposed, Barnett would acquire Bank South's $422-million- asset Pensacola franchise. Bank South would acquire the two Barnett banks in the Atlanta area, which have total assets of $784 million and 25 offices. Barnett would also receive 3.9 percent of Bank South's common stock and cash.
 "This would be a win-win opportunity for both banks," said Charles E. Rice, Barnett's chairman and chief executive officer. "It would make Barnett the banking leader in Pensacola, and it would strengthen Bank South's position in the Atlanta market.
 "The transaction is consistent with our vision of operating a highly profitable, independent financial services organization in markets where Barnett has a leadership position," he said.
 Rice emphasized that Barnett will continue operating in southwest and southeast Georgia. "Our banks in southeast and southwest Georgia are strategically positioned among the top three competitors in their respective markets, which is a position we did not enjoy in Atlanta," he said.
 After the transaction, Barnett would have about $750 million in assets and 18 offices in Pensacola.
 The transaction is subject to continuing due diligence by each party, negotiation of a definitive agreement and approval by the respective boards of directors. The transaction would be further subject to approval by appropriate regulatory authorities.
 Barnett has assets of $38 billion and is the leading financial services organization in Florida and 18th-largest in the U.S. Its stock (BBI) is listed on the New York Stock Exchange. Bank South has assets of $4.3 billion and 133 banking locations.
 -0- 4/15/93
 /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 BKSO)


CO: Barnett Banks, Inc.; Bank South Corporation ST: Florida, Georgia IN: FIN SU: TNM

AW-JJ -- FL015 -- 6491 04/15/93 17:18 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Apr 15, 1993
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