Fifth Third Bancorp and Bank One Corp. were once both small Ohio banks, but as they have grown they have moved in very different directions.
Fifth Third has become the star that Bank One had been until a matter of months ago. And Fifth Third's philosophy is very similar to the one that used to make Bank One a sweetheart of investors. That philosophy is to acquire smaller banks and let them keep their top executives and their boards of directors but expect them to meet stiff demands. The local managers also are expected to learn techniques and adopt products proven to be successful in other units of the system.