Bob Jones, the chief executive of Old National Bancorp (ONB) in Evansville, Ind., is still stinging from a tough business lesson he learned this year.

The $9.5 billion-asset company got bad news in January when First Financial Bancorp (FFBC) in Cincinnati announced it had hired a commercial lending team in Fort Wayne, Ind. The team was poached from Tower Financial, a company that Old National was in the process of buying. 

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