AKRON, Ohio - First Bancorporation of Ohio adopted a shareholder rights plan, but said it has no knowledge that anyone is considering a takeover of the company.

The company said the plan is designed to protect the interests of shareholders "by encouraging a potential acquirer to negotiate with the board of directors."

The rights expire Oct. 20, 2003, unless earlier redeemed by the company.

The rights entitle the holder to purchase, at an exercise price of $90, one- 100th of a share of newly issued Series A preferred stock of the company.

If First Bancorporation is acquired in a merger, or if there is a transfer of 50% or more of its assets or earning power, each right holder would be entitled to receive common shares of the acquiring company worth two times the exercise price of the right.

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