SmartFinancial, Inc. ("SmartFinancial"; NASDAQ: SMBK), announced Monday earnings of $1.2 million or $0.20 per share for its fourth quarter.
This quarter is the first with a full three months’ results from each subsidiary bank, as in the third quarter 2015, SmartFinancial successfully completed the merger of two holding companies, legacy SmartFinancial, Inc. and Cornerstone Bancshares, Inc., and carried forward the name "SmartFinancial, Inc.".
Billy Carroll, president & CEO said, "We enjoyed a favorable final quarter, but look forward to completing the combination of our two banks slated for late February, at which time we'll begin realizing greater efficiencies. As we unite as SmartBank, spanning East Tennessee and Northwest Florida, 2016 will be our year to focus on fundamentals, reinforce the foundation of an innovative, forward-looking brand and execute on our disciplined growth strategy."
SmartFinancial's Chairman Miller Welborn said, "It's exciting to be on the eve of unveiling SmartBank in Chattanooga, which encompasses a region that has tremendous prospects for growth and will remain a significant market for SmartBank for years to come. The banking industry is ready for re-envisioning and this company's energetic, entrepreneurial leadership and talented team of associates poise us perfectly to deliver a new experience in banking which we anticipate will reward clients, associates and shareholders alike."
? Annualized loan growth of 9.5% in the quarter, as net loans finished the year at $723.4 million compared to $706.6 million for the third quarter.
? Outstanding asset quality as estimated Nonperforming Assets to Total Assets fell to 0.75% compared to 1.17% at the end of the third quarter.
? Net income available to common shareholders accelerated to $1.2 million, or $0.19 per diluted share, in Q4 2015 compared to a loss of ($0.1) million or ($0.03) per diluted share in Q3 2015. The loss in prior quarter was primarily due to one-time merger expenses at the holding company.
? Net operating earnings available to common shareholders, which excludes certain non-operating items, improved to $1.1 million, or $0.18 per diluted share, in Q4 2015 from $0.10 per diluted share in Q3 2015.
Mr. Carroll said, “We’re optimistic about the synergies our banks will generate once combined. While we’ve been focused on the merger, we have a newly established mortgage unit with experienced personnel which is already driving revenue and will serve the entire franchise beginning in March. This specialty group will allow us to better serve clients, offer a wider range of products and complement a focus on servicing high-net worth clientele. We look forward to reporting on the results of this investment in coming quarters.”