MEMPHIS -- National Commerce Bancorp. said Thursday it plans to open nine branches in Kroger supermarkets in Raleigh and Durham, N.C., beginning in mid-summer 1994, pending regulatory approval.

This expansion will bring National Commerce's in-store supermarket banking network to 58 branches, one of the largest such networks in the United States.

"This expansion into North Carolina continues our corporate strategy of de novo entry into new markets via supermarket banking," said Chairman Thomas M. Garrott.

Each supermarket location will be a full-service bank, offering the same services as a traditional branch, including mortgages, car loans, equity credit lines, checking and savings plans, and investment vehicles.

Residents to Be Hired

National Commerce anticipates hiring about 26 local residents to staff the branches.

The bank has worked with Krogers to develop in-store banking programs since 1985 and owns and operates supermarket branches in Memphis, Nashville, Knoxville, Kingsport, and Johnson City, Tenn. as well as Roanoke, Va.,

National Commerce has also institutions in Operating more than 300 in-store branches across the nation.

National Commerce has $2.8 billion in assets. It is the parent company of National Bank of Commerce, Nashville Bank of Commerce, NBC KnoxVille Bank, and NBC Bank.

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