First Citizens Bancorporation, Inc. Announces Acquisition of Merchants and Farmers Bank in Madison County

March 8, 2008

MADISON COUNTY, GA – March 5, 2008 – Columbia, S.C.-based First Citizens Bancorporation, Inc., parent company of First Citizens Bank and Trust Company, Inc., is pleased to announce that an agreement has been signed to acquire Merchants and Farmers Bank headquartered in Madison County.

This transaction is expected to be completed late in the second quarter of 2008, pending receipt of required regulatory approvals. Merchants and Farmers Bank will continue to operate separately as a subsidiary of First Citizens Bancorporation, Inc.

“We are delighted to be joining an organization that shares our focus on community banking, and the commitment to our customers and our staff. This gives us an opportunity to expand our product offerings, while maintaining our tradition of providing local decision-making and superior service to our customers. We think this transaction will create an even better financial institution in Madison and surrounding counties,” said Johnny Terrell, CEO of Merchants and Farmers Bank.

“This partnership is a perfect fit for both companies because of our common values and dedication to our customers, associates, and the communities we serve,” said Jim Apple, First Citizens’ Chairman and CEO.

Merchants and Farmers Bank operates six full-service offices in the communities of Comer, Colbert, Danielsville, Hull, and Ila. As of Dec. 31, 2007, Merchants and Farmers Bank had consolidated assets of $145 million and consolidated deposits of $120 million.

About First Citizens
First Citizens Bancorporation, Inc. is the parent company of First Citizens Bank and Trust Company, Inc., and The Exchange Bank of South Carolina, Inc. First Citizens Bank offers commercial, wealth, and retail banking services through its nearly 170 offices in South Carolina and Georgia. As of Dec. 31, 2007, First Citizens Bancorporation, Inc., had total consolidated assets of $6.08 billion. For more information, visit the First Citizens web site at