• Hancock Whitney Corporation
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  • Hancock Bank Completes Ross-King-Walker Acquisition
    Company Release - 11/04/2004 16:59

    GULFPORT, Miss., Nov. 4 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- One of Mississippi's oldest property and casualty insurance leaders has officially joined the century-old insurance subsidiary of one of America's strongest, safest financial institutions and the largest financial services company headquartered in South Mississippi.

    Earlier today, officials representing Hancock Bank and Hattiesburg based Ross-King-Walker, Inc. (RKW), signed the proverbial dotted lines in an all-cash transaction finalizing Hancock's acquisition of RKW as a division of Hancock Insurance Agency. The post-merger entity will retain the trade name of Ross-King-Walker.

    Established in 1902, Hancock Insurance Agency -- an Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (IIABA) "Best Practices" agency -- is a wholly owned subsidiary of Hancock Bank. With current revenues of $1.8 million and 21 employees at offices in Hattiesburg, Pascagoula, Meridian, and Columbia, MS, RKW has provided quality protection for thousands of Gulf South families and businesses since 1901.

    "Both Ross-King-Walker and Hancock Insurance Agency represent some of the nation's most well-respected carriers. We believe this mutually beneficial partnership will significantly enhance the spectrum of tailored insurance options we can offer Hancock's retail and commercial customers and will provide RKW customers entree to Hancock Bank's comprehensive lines of financial services choices," said Camors C. "Chris" Roth, CPCU, corporate head of Hancock Insurance Agency.

    Roth and RKW President Charles Leggett, Jr., said they expect to maintain existing agency teams and operational structure to nurture existing business relationships and cultivate new growth opportunities.

    "This venture is a logical progression toward bringing stronger insurance resources to Hancock Bank's consumer and commercial customers through RKW's professional expertise and roster of well-established providers. We can also introduce RKW customers to Hancock's full array of financial solutions and the company's 105-year-old legacy of strength, stability, integrity, and service," said Leggett.

    Founded in 1899, Hancock Bank operates 103 full-service offices and more than 130 automated teller machines throughout South Mississippi, Louisiana, and the Florida Panhandle. Other bank subsidiaries include Hancock Investment Services, Inc., Hancock Mortgage Corporation, Magna Insurance Company, and Harrison Finance Company. Hancock Holding Company (Nasdaq: HBHC) -- the parent company of Hancock Bank Mississippi, Hancock Bank of Louisiana, and Hancock Bank of Florida -- has assets of $4.6 billion.

    Additional information about RKW is available at www.rosskingwalker.com. Readers can access Hancock Bank corporate profiles as well as online banking and bill pay services at www.hancockbank.com.

    SOURCE  Hancock Holding Company
        -0-                             11/04/2004
        /CONTACT:  Carl J. Chaney, EVP & Chief Financial Officer, +1-228-868-4727,
    or +1-800-522-6542, or Paul D. Guichet, VP, Investor Relations,
    +1-228-214-5242 or +1-800-522-6542, both of Hancock Bank; or Charles Leggett,
    Jr., President of Ross-King-Walker, Inc., +1-601-544-3300, or +1-800-844-7594/
        /Web site:  http://www.rosskingwalker.com /
        /Web site:  http://hancockbank.com /
        (HBHC)
    
    CO:  Hancock Holding Company; Ross-King-Walker, Inc.
    ST:  Mississippi
    IN:  FIN INS
    SU:  TNM
    
    SF-MV 
    -- LATH153 --
    3459 11/04/200416:59 ESThttp://www.prnewswire.com