Aquesta reports higher net income for quarter, year

Jan. 27.  Aquesta Financial Holdings, Inc. and subsidiaries, including its primary subsidiary Aquesta Bank, announced today unaudited net income of $387,00 (15 cents per share) for the fourth quarter of 2015.  This is an increase from the 2014’s fourth-quarter income of $368,000, or 14 cents per share.

For the twelve months ending Dec. 31, 2015, net income was $2.0 million (78 cents per share) versus the twelve months ending Dec. 31, 2014 of $1.7 million (67 cents per share).

Aquesta CEO and President Jim Engel said, “We are happy with the strong ending quarter for 2015 and hope this helps establish the pace for 2016.  Loan production is excellent as well as core deposit growth.  Our SouthPark branch is up and running with continued growth expected.  We recently contracted on a Wilmington branch location that will also house our Wilmington insurance operations. In sum, we had an excellent year and look forward to growth of loans and earnings in 2016.”

Key highlights:

  • Very good loan growth of 14 percent
  • Extraordinary annualized 4th quarter loan growth of 26 percent
  • Core deposit growth of 24 percent
  • Solid asset quality with no nonperforming loans
  • Significant decrease in foreclosed property (OREO)
  • Expansion to South Charlotte market with SouthPark branch, which opened in October of 2015
  • Announced Wilmington expansion of a new bank branch scheduled to open in mid- 2016
  • Named “Top 50 Employer in Mecklenburg County” out of 760 entrants
  • Year-over-year growth in net income, return on assets, and return on equity for the third consecutive year
  • Payment of third annual dividend with consecutive year payout growth of 10 percent


Balance Sheet Growth

At December 31, 2015, Aquesta’s total assets were $293.2 million, total loans were $195.6 million and core deposits were $147.4 million.  This represents 11.2%, 13.6% and 23.5% increase over the same period last year, respectively.


Continued Asset Quality Improvement

Nonperforming assets decreased to $900 thousand at Dec. 31, 2015 from $2.7 million at Dec. 31, 2014, a 66.8% decrease.  Aquesta had no nonaccrual loans as of Dec. 31, 2015, compared to $1.5 million at the same time in 2014.  Other real estate owned was $900 thousand at Dec. 31, 2015, down from $1.1 million as of Dec. 31, 2014.


Net Interest Income Growth

Net interest income was $9.8 million in 2015, compared to $8.8 million for 2014.  This is an increase of $1.0 million, or 11.8%.


About Aquesta

Aquesta Financial Holdings is the holding company to its wholly owned subsidiary, Aquesta Bank.  Aquesta Bank is a full-service community bank located in Cornelius, N. C., in the Lake Norman community, about 20 miles north of Charlotte.  Aquesta has seven area branches, including branches in Davidson, Huntersville, two locations in Cornelius, two locations in Mooresville, and its newest location in the South Park area of Charlotte.  Aquesta also has a loan production office located in Wilmington, N. C.  In addition, Aquesta offers property, casualty and health insurance products through the bank’s wholly owned subsidiary, Aquesta Insurance Services, Inc.  Aquesta Insurance Services, Inc. is an independent agency and has offices in Cornelius, Huntersville, Mooresville and Wilmington.  Aquesta Financial Holdings’s common stock is publicly traded and is quoted on OTC under the symbol AQFH.


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