Aquesta Financial Holdings, Inc & Aquesta Bank Announce Results for the Fourth Quarter of 2014

CORNELIUS, N.C., Jan. 23, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Aquesta Financial Holdings, Inc and Subsidiaries – including its primary subsidiary Aquesta Bank ("Aquesta") (OTC Market symbol AQFH) announced today its results for the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2014. For the fourth quarter, Aquesta had unaudited net income of $374,000 (15 cents per share) versus net income of $361,000 (14 cents per share) for the fourth quarter of 2013. Unaudited net income for the year ended December 31, 2014 was $1.71 million (67 cents per share) versus net income for the year ended December 31, 2013 of $1.47 million (57 cents per share).

CEO and President of Aquesta, Jim Engel, stated, "We are pleased to report Aquesta's fourth quarter and 2014 earnings. This year we were able to increase our second annual cash dividend by 10 percent to 11 cents per share to our loyal shareholders. The growth of our loan portfolio and core deposits reflects positively on Aquesta's commitment to providing outstanding customer service."

Engel continued, "While third quarter results were good, they were somewhat lower then trend due to the costs of opening two new branches along with a significant upgrade in our internet capacity. Incurring these onetime expansion expenses is in keeping with our strategic goal of striking a balance of achieving both superior growth and superior earnings without excessive emphasis on either of these two criteria."

Aquesta provided the following financial highlights for comparison:

12/31/14 12/31/13
unaudited audited
(dollars in thousands)
Financial Highlights
Total Assets 263,177 233,948
Total Loans 172,250 130,344
Total Core Deposits 119,794 97,665
NPAs* as a % of Assets 1.17 1.71
ALLL** as a % of Loans 1.44 1.65
Book Value Per Share 8.88 8.22
12/31/14 12/31/13
Non Interest Income*** 3,264 2,969
Net Interest Income 8,761 7,673
Provision for Loan Losses 429 274
Net Income 1,705 1,469
Earnings Per Share 0.67 0.57
*NPA's consist of loans 90 days or more past due and still accruing, nonaccrual loans, troubled debt restructurings and other real estate owned.
**ALLL is the Allowance for Loan and Lease Losses
***Excludes gains/losses on the sale of securities.

For additional information, please contact Kristin Couch (Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer) at 704-439-4343 or visit us online at Aquesta has branches in Davidson, Huntersville, Cornelius and Mooresville. Aquesta Insurance Services, Inc. ---an independent agency--- has offices in Cornelius, Huntersville, Kannapolis, Mooresville and Wilmington.

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.

Source:Aquesta Bank