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FOURTH FINANCIAL AND GREAT SOUTHERN BANCORP SIGN DEFINITIVE MERGER AGREEMENT

 WICHITA, Kan., Oct. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Fourth Financial Corp. (NASDAQ: FRTH) and Great Southern Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ: GSBC) today announced they have executed a definitive agreement to merge. The managements of Fourth Financial and Great Southern said they expect the merger to close in the first quarter of 1994. The agreement is subject to regulatory approval and the approval of Great Southern Bancorp shareholders.
 Fourth Financial Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Darrell G. Knudson and Great Southern Chairman and Chief Executive Officer William V. Turner said the agreement calls for Fourth Financial to exchange 2,800,000 shares of its stock for all of Great Southern's stock. Each share of the thrift's stock, including shares under option, will be exchanged for 1.6394 shares of Fourth Financial stock.
 Wichita-based Fourth Financial has $6.5 billion in assets. Its two other pending acquisitions include a $120 million bank in Ponca City, Okla., and a $207 million bank in Tulsa. When pending acquisitions including the acquisition of $515 million Great Southern Bancorp are completed, Fourth Financial will have $7.3 billion in assets.
 The company currently operates 77 offices in 31 Kansas communities through its subsidiary, BANK IV Kansas, N.A., and 31 offices in seven Oklahoma communities through its subsidiary, BANK IV Oklahoma, N.A. The BANK IV banks provide a full line of banking and financial services for consumers, agri-business, small businesses and mid- to large-sized companies. Fourth Financial's common stock and depositary shares are traded on the NASDAQ national system under the symbols "FRTH" and "FRTHZ," respectively.
 Great Southern Bancorp's Great Southern Savings Bank subsidiary has 25 offices in 15 counties in southwest and central Missouri including Springfield, Joplin, Branson and Osage Beach. The bank offers a full range of banking, lending, investment, employee benefit and pension planning, insurance and travel services.
 -0- 10/12/93
 /CONTACT: Michael J. Shonka, chief financial officer of Fourth Financial Corp., 316-261-4510 (investors), or William V. Turner, chairman/CEO of Great Southern Bancorp, 417-888-4300 or R. Brent Thompson, senior vice president of Fourth Financial Corp., 316-261-4403, (media)/
 (FRTH GSBC)


CO: Fourth Financial Corporation; Great Southern Bancorp, Inc. ST: Kansas IN: FIN SU: TNM

TM -- NY102 -- 1330 10/12/93 17:15 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Oct 12, 1993
Words:368
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