As Mergers Continue, Home BancShares Sees 1Q Profit Rise

Home BancShares Inc. of Conway on Thursday reported first-quarter profit of $46.9 million, up 13 percent from the same quarter last year, as the company closed two acquisitions and announced a third that pushed the company farther beyond the $10 billion-asset mark.

The parent company of Centennial Bank (Nasdaq: HOMB) said diluted earnings per share was 33 cents, up about 14 percent from the same quarter last year.

"We were active on many fronts during the first quarter of 2017, and we delivered solid quarterly financial results in spite of the additional expenses associated with the recently closed acquisitions of GHI and Commerce," Chairman Johnny Allison said in a news release. "We also look forward to the completion of the merger with Stonegate Bank in Pompano Beach, Florida later this year and the opportunity to welcome them to the Home BancShares family." 

Last month, the company announced that it would acquire Stonegate Bank of Pompano Beach, Florida, a $778.4 million deal that expands Centennial's presence in the Sunshine State. Once the deal is done, the combined company will have about $13.5 billion in total assets.

The purchase is Home BancShares' 22nd and the latest of many in Florida, where it just wrapped up a deal to buy Giant Holdings Inc. of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, in an $88.5 million transaction. In November, it announced that it was the successful bidder to buy The Bank of Commerce, a Florida state-chartered bank that operates in the Sarasota area, from its parent company, Bank of Commerce Holdings Inc.

Home BancShares CEO Randy Sims said the company recorded its 24th consecutive most profitable quarter in the firm's history, when excluding merger expenses and other one-time items.

"Our team continues to do an excellent job of controlling expenses," he said. "We have been able to maintain a strong core efficiency ratio of 36.96 percent, even though we added nine branch locations with the GHI and Commerce transactions in the first quarter of 2017."

Total loans receivable were $7.85 billion at March 31, compared to $7.39 billion at Dec. 31. Total deposits were $7.57 billion, compared to $6.94 billion at Dec. 31. Total assets were $10.72 billion, compared to $9.81 billion at Dec. 31.