Aquesta Financial Holdings, Inc Announces Results of Operations for the First Quarter of 2017

Cornelius, North Carolina, UNITED STATES


CORNELIUS, N.C., April 19, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Aquesta Financial Holdings, Inc and subsidiaries (“Aquesta”) (OTC Market:AQFH) – including its primary subsidiary Aquesta Bank announced today net income for the first quarter of 2017 (three month period ending March 31, 2017).  For the first quarter, Aquesta had unaudited net income of $460,000 (14 cents per share) compared to first quarter of 2016 net income of $368,000 (12 cents per share). 

Jim Engel, CEO and President of Aquesta, said “I’m very pleased with our 25-percent year over year growth in earnings along with strong loan production during the first quarter.  With the addition of the Greenville market and expansion of our SBA Group, we are hopeful that our loan and deposit growth trends will continue.  Certainly, we are off to a good start to 2017.”

Key Highlights

  • Loan growth of $4.0 million in the first quarter of 2017 (annualized 6.4 percent). 
  • Core deposit growth of $7.3 million in the first quarter 2017 (annualized 14.1 percent).
  • Expansion into South Carolina with the addition of a Greenville Market President.

Solid Balance Sheet Growth
At March 31, 2017, Aquesta’s total assets were $353.6 million compared to $353.1 million at December 31, 2016.  Total loans were $254.8 million at March 31, 2017 compared to $250.8 million at December 31, 2016.  Core deposits were $212.6 million at March 31, 2017 compared to $205.3 million at December 31, 2016.

Strong Asset Quality
Asset quality remains very strong.  Nonperforming assets as of March 31, 2017 were at $1.7 million which was consistent with December 31, 2016.   Aquesta had $198 thousand in nonaccrual loans as of March 31, 2017 compared to $122 thousand in nonaccrual loans as of December 31, 2016.  Other real estate owned was $1.5 million at the end of the first quarter 2017, as well as at the end of the fourth quarter 2016.

Net Interest Income
Net interest income was $2.8 million as of March 31, 2017 compared to $2.5 million as of March 31, 2016.  This is an increase of $403 thousand or 16.2%.  The increase in net interest income continues to be directly associated with the Company’s continued loan growth.

Non Interest Expense
Non interest expense was $3.1 million for the three months ended March 31, 2017 compared to $3.0 million for the three months ended March 31, 2016.  The increase in expense was due to additional personnel as the Company continues to expand.

Personnel expense was at $1.9 million as of March 31, 2017 compared to $1.8 million as of March 31, 2016.

Occupancy expense decreased by $6 thousand for the three months ended March 31, 2017 compared to the three months ending March 31, 2016.  This was due to the consolidation of the Wilmington insurance branch into the Wilmington bank branch location.  Aquesta had no OREO losses for the three months ended March 31, 2017 as compared to $84 thousand for the three months ending March 31, 2016.

Below are the following financial highlights for comparison:

Aquesta Financial Holdings, Inc.
Select Financial Highlights
(Dollars in thousands, except per share data)
          
    3/31/17    12/31/16
    (unaudited)    (unaudited)
Period End Balance Sheet Data:         
Loans  $254,807   $250,808
Less: Allowance for loan losses   2,690    2,650
Investment securities   62,185    65,137
Goodwill   687    687
Insurance agency intangible   1,651    1,752
Total assets   353,643    353,100
Core deposits   212,609    205,302
CDs and IRAs   60,525    64,004
Shareholders equity   27,994    27,207
          
Ending shares outstanding   3,303,814    3,280,314
Book value per share   8.47    8.29
Tangible book value per share   7.77    7.55

 

      
     For the three months ended
     3/31/17    3/31/16
     (unaudited)    (audited)
Income and Per Share Data:          
Interest income   $3,472    $2,927 
Interest expense    579     412 
Net interest income    2,893     2,515 
Provision for loan losses    0     25 
Net interest income after provision for loan losses    2,893     2,490 
Non interest income    882     1,060 
Non interest expense    3,127     3,004 
Income before income taxes    648     546 
Income tax expense    188     178 
Net income   $460    $368 
           
Earnings per share - basic*   $0.14    $0.12 
Earnings per share - diluted*    0.13     0.11 
Weighted average shares - basic*    3,288,670     3,048,170 
Weighted average shares - diluted*    3,480,565     3,240,406 
           
Select performance ratios:          
Return on average assets    0.52%    0.48%
Return on average equity    6.66%    6.29%
           
     3/31/17    12/31/16
     (unaudited)    (unaudited)
Asset quality data:          
90 days or more and accruing   $-    $- 
Non accrual loans    198     122 
Other real estate loans    1,539     1,539 
Total non performing assets    1,737     1,661 
           
Troubled debt restructurings   $273    $293 
           
Non performing assets / total assets    0.49%    0.48%
Allowance for loan losses / total loans    1.06%    1.06%
             

Aquesta Financial Holdings, Inc. is the holding company to its wholly owned subsidiary, Aquesta Bank.  Aquesta Bank is a full service community bank headquartered in Cornelius, North Carolina with seven branches in the south Charlotte, Lake Norman and Wilmington areas.    In addition, Aquesta offers property, casualty and health insurance products through its wholly owned subsidiary, Aquesta Insurance Services, Inc. an independent agency. 

For additional information, please contact Kristin Couch (Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer) or Jim Engel (Chief Executive Officer and President) at 704-439-4343 or visit us online at www.aquesta.com.

Information in this press release may contain forward looking statements that might involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially.  These risks and uncertainties include without limitation, the effects of future economic conditions, governmental fiscal and monetary policies, legislative and regulatory changes, and changes in interest rates.