updated 9/30/2010 10:17:05 AM ET 2010-09-30T14:17:05

WARSAW, Ind., Sept. 30, 2010 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Lakeland Financial Corporation (Nasdaq:LKFN) and Lake City Bank announced today that the Bank has reached a milestone with loans outstanding in excess of $500 million in the Fort Wayne market.

Michael L. Kubacki, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, stated, "Since opening our first office in Fort Wayne in 1999, we have been extremely pleased with our growth and financial performance. The Fort Wayne community has embraced our relationship oriented, client-driven approach to retail banking and commercial banking. With over $700 million of total loan commitments and over $500 million in outstanding loans in only eleven years, we have set a new standard of growth in this market. In addition, our Wealth Advisory Group has established itself with nearly $200 million of trust assets in the Fort Wayne market."

Kubacki continued, "Our local management team in the market is led by highly experienced Fort Wayne bankers who understand the community and the unique local needs of clients.  Our consistent growth over these past few years with both retail and commercial clients has helped us become a leading provider of financial services in the market. We are gratified by our success in Fort Wayne and would like to thank our clients for supporting Lake City Bank and making this achievement possible."

Lakeland Financial Corporation is a $2.6 billion bank holding company headquartered in Warsaw, Indiana. Lake City Bank serves Northern Indiana with 43 branches located in the following Indiana counties: Kosciusko, Elkhart, Allen, St. Joseph, DeKalb, Fulton, Huntington, LaGrange, Marshall, Noble, Pulaski and Whitley. The Company also has a Loan Production Office in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Lakeland Financial Corporation may be accessed on its home page at www.lakecitybank.com . The Company's common stock is traded on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under "LKFN". Market makers in Lakeland Financial Corporation common shares include Automated Trading Desk Financial Services, LLC, B-Trade Services, LLC, Citadel Securities, LLC, Citigroup Global Markets Holdings, Inc., Domestic Securities, Inc., E*TRADE Capital Markets LLC, FTN Financial Securities Corp., FTN Equity Capital Markets Corp., Goldman Sachs & Company, Howe Barnes Hoefer & Arnett, Inc., Keefe, Bruyette & Woods, Inc., Knight Equity Markets, L.P., Morgan Stanley & Co., Inc., Stifel Nicolaus & Company, Inc., Susquehanna Capital Group and UBS Securities LLC.

This document contains, and future oral and written statements of the Company and its management may contain, forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 with respect to the financial condition, results of operations, plans, objectives, future performance and business of the Company. Forward-looking statements, which may be based upon beliefs, expectations and assumptions of the Company's management and on information currently available to management, are generally identifiable by the use of words such as "believe," "expect," "anticipate," "plan," "intend," "estimate," "may," "will," "would," "could," "should" or other similar expressions. Additionally, all statements in this document, including forward-looking statements, speak only as of the date they are made, and the Company undertakes no obligation to update any statement in light of new information or future events. Additional information concerning the Company and its business, including factors that could materially affect the Company's financial results, is included in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the Company's Annual Report on form 10-K.

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