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REPUBLIC NATIONAL BANK ANNOUNCES OPENING OF BANKING OFFICE IN BENNETTSVILLE AND DIVESTITURE OF PIEDMONT, S.C. OFFICE TO CAROLINA FIRST

 REPUBLIC NATIONAL BANK ANNOUNCES OPENING OF BANKING OFFICE IN BENNETTSVILLE AND DIVESTITURE OF PIEDMONT, S.C. OFFICE TO CAROLINA FIRST
 COLUMBIA, S.C., Sept. 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Columbia based Republic National Bank today confirmed plans to open a new banking office in Bennettsville, S.C. Concurrent with this announcement, Republic announced the divestiture of its Piedmont, S.C., banking office to Carolina First Bank of Greenville, S.C. Acquisition of the Piedmont banking office by Carolina First is scheduled for completion Feb. 28, 1993 and Republic's Bennettsville office is scheduled to open by March 31st.
 Jim Apple, President of Republic, said, "The divestiture of our Piedmont office makes a lot of sense for Republic due to the lack of neighboring Republic banking offices in the piedmont region of the State." Apple went on to say, "With Republic's concentration of offices in other regions of the State, time and resources can be better spent where Republic has a larger presence. Areas like the midlands, Barnwell County, Edgefield County, the lower part of the State and the Pee Dee region with our new presence in Bennettsville provide an excellent geographical grouping of our offices. We are now better positioned as a leader in community banking here in South Carolina."
 For Carolina First Bank, the Piedmont banking office is an excellent geographic fit. Mack Whittle, President and Chief Executive Officer of Carolina First Corporation, stated, "With two branches in Anderson County and five branches in neighboring Greenville County, the acquisition of Republic's Piedmont office expands our market coverage in the upper part of the State. Our expansion strategy includes selective branch acquisitions in the right markets. We are pleased to be entering the Piedmont market."
 Republic National bank is a Columbia, S.C. based bank and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Columbia based Resource Bancshares Corporation, a $700 million asset company. Republic has nineteen (19) banking offices in South Carolina and has $417 million in total assets. Carolina First Corporation (NASDAQ: CAFC) is a $488 million asset financial institution holding company and offers a broad range of commercial and consumer financial services through the sixteen (16) branch locations of its two subsidiaries, Carolina First Bank and Carolina First Savings Bank. Both banks are members of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.
 Republic's Bennettsville office will occupy the property at 405 East Main Street formerly occupied by Security Federal Savings Bank.
 The purchase of the Piedmont office by Carolina First and the opening of the Bennettsville office by Republic National Bank are both subject to regulatory approval.
 -0- 9/22/92
 /CONTACT: William S. Hummers, III of Carolina First Corporation, 803-255-7913, or Phil Truesdale of Republic National Bank, 803-253-8906/
 (CAFC) CO: Republic National Bank; Carolina First Bank; Carolina First
 Corporation ST: South Carolina IN: FIN SU: TNM


CM -- CH008 -- 2318 09/22/92 15:41 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Sep 22, 1992
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