BancorpSouth Increases Efforts With Small Businesses

BancorpSouth Bank, a wholly-owned subsidiary of BancorpSouth, Inc. , a $13.2 billion asset financial holding company, has increased its focus on small- to mid-sized businesses throughout its eight-state market area. The initiatives include a focus on proactively assisting small- to mid-sized companies through special needs analysis, state of the industry products and services and special incentives, supported by a range of sales and marketing activities. The bank's initiative is designed to help assist small businesses in better managing their cash flow, saving them time and maximizing their bottom line.

Gordon Lewis, BancorpSouth Vice Chairman for Community Banking, said, "Our small business focus is important due to the large number of small businesses and entrepreneurs who are bearing much of the brunt of the national economic downturn. In these times it is important, often critical, for a small business to establish a close relationship with their banker. BancorpSouth's emphasis on personal service and local decision-making is a major advantage our bank offers to small businesses."

Among the incentives, BancorpSouth continues to offer its standard next-day credit to small businesses that open a merchant services account with their bank, along with a limited time offer of up to $200 of free processing services on credit card purchases. Some businesses have to wait up to five days for a credit card purchase to be credited to their bank account.

Free small business checking accounts, combined with free personal checking for business owners and their employees, are part of the BancorpSouth small business package, along with free Internet banking with bill pay, mobile banking, Treasury Management services, business loans and lines of credit for qualifying clients.

"Small businesses are looking for ways to more cost effectively run their businesses. We feel that we offer a package of services that appeals to any small- to mid-sized businesses in helping them achieve success," said Michael Lindsey, Senior Vice President and head of Retail Banking at BancorpSouth.

As a special incentive to small business owners, for a limited time, BancorpSouth is offering a $100 cash incentive to small business owners who transfer their small business checking account to BancorpSouth. As a plus, if they transfer their personal checking account to BancorpSouth, they are eligible to receive an additional $50 cash incentive.

"One of the most important features is the one small business owners most frequently overlook and that is financial counsel. Small businesses, no matter the category or size, will benefit from good advice so their business survives, and builds an even stronger solid foundation, said Lindsey. "We will provide a financial assessment at no cost. We'll advise a business to watch their inventories carefully, to reduce or stretch out debt, to very diligently monitor their cash flow and to get tough with collections."

Lindsey said BancorpSouth works to put itself in the position of its customers, to listen to their concerns, to be "right where they are" by responding whenever possible, with optimal banking solutions that are provided by personal bankers with local decision-making authority.

Greenwich Associates, a leading international research-based consulting firm in financial services, recently presented awards to BancorpSouth for overall satisfaction from small business banking customers, as well as an additional award citing the bank for its work with mid-sized banking customers.

BancorpSouth, Inc. is a financial holding company headquartered in Tupelo, Mississippi, with approximately $13.2 billion in assets. BancorpSouth Bank, a wholly-owned subsidiary of BancorpSouth, Inc., operates approximately 314 commercial banking, mortgage, insurance, trust and broker/dealer locations in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Tennessee and Texas. BancorpSouth Bank also operates an insurance location in Illinois. BancorpSouth's common stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol BXS.

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SOURCE: BancorpSouth Bank

CONTACT: Randy Burchfield, +1-662-620-4920