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Banking company seeks growth in region

October 08, 2004|by JULIE E. GREENE

Susquehanna Bancshares Inc. officials will continue to look for banks to acquire that meet their criteria, bank President William J. Reuter said Thursday.

Speaking to approximately 140 people at Ferris, Baker Watts Inc.'s Investor Series Luncheon at the Four Points Sheraton, Reuter said bank officials want to expand the Susquehanna franchise into Maryland's Howard and Frederick counties and eventually into Montgomery County.

The recently announced name change for Susquehanna's banks might make it easier to grow in Frederick County, Reuter said. Susquehanna is reducing its eight bank names to three.

There has been name confusion between Susquehanna's Farmers & Merchants Bank and Trust and a different bank in Frederick County called Farmers & Mechanics Bank, Reuter said.

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Susquehanna's F&M Bank will change to Susquehanna Bank next spring.

Susquehanna officials also are looking for growth opportunities:

· Along the Interstate 81 corridor from Winchester, Va., to Carlisle, Pa.

· In the Greater Delaware Valley area, including South Jersey and the Pennsylvania side of the Delaware River up to Lehigh Valley, Pa.

· In the Lancaster, Pa.-York, Pa.-Baltimore corridor.

· Within its existing market area.

Bank officials consider factors such as a market's average household income and population growth when looking at possible acquisitions, Reuter said.

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