By MATT BLOIS
Reliant Bank, headquartered in Brentwood, reported a slight increase in profits during the first quarter of 2019, compared the same period last year.
Executives also said the bank saw strong growth in loans during the winter, when loans typically grow slowly.
Reliant earned a profit of $3.8 million during the first quarter of 2019. During the same period last year the bank earned $3.7 million.
The profits in early 2019 are slightly lower than the last quarter of 2018. The company received a tax credit at the end of 2018 that boosted profits.
CEO DeVan Ard said the company’s profits were driven in part by a growth in loans. Loans grew by 2.5% between December and April.
“Loan growth was exceptionally strong during a quarter that is usually slower due to seasonality,” Ard said on a conference call with investors on April 25. “We are especially proud that our loan growth reflects 100% core, high quality loans originated at attractive yields and that we do not rely on purchased credits to supplement our growth.”
Executives said they were also pleased with production from new offices in Murfreesboro and Chattanooga. Those offices opened last year.
The bank reported $6.1 million in non-performing assets, representing 0.35% of total assets. That’s an increase compared to the end of 2018. The bank had to place a $1 million loan on non-accrual status during the quarter.
Ard repeatedly highlighted the strength of the economy in Middle Tennessee during a conference call, but also said the bank is moving forward cautiously.
“We’re keenly aware of the boom and bust cycles in the economy, so we continue to manage our loan portfolio and new loan production,” he said. “Our focus remains on lending to established home builders, real estate developers and small to mid-size business customers.”
Ard said that he didn’t have any news to report about mergers and acquisitions, but said those are still an important part of the company’s strategy.