Paragon National Bank announced at its annual shareholders’ meeting that it has maintained profitability over the last nine quarters. During the May 14th meeting at the bank’s Fountain Place location, attendees heard CEO Robert Shaw, President Mike Edwards and CFO Lewis Perkins present the bank’s other key accomplishments and financials from last year, as well as the areas of focus for 2013.
The meeting opened with official business, including the election/re-election of Napoleon L. Cassibry III; Glenn W. Cofield; James F. Freeman MD; Robert J. Hussey III; Mary H. McDaniel; Lauren Boggs McHugh; John T. Novarese, Jr.; Edwin S. Roberson; Christian J. Saenger; Pete A. Stark and Craig L. Weiss to the Board of Directors. Crowe Horwath was also ratified as Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm for 2013.
Following the completion of official business, Shaw, Edwards and Perkins reviewed the bank’s progress on accomplishing three key strategic priorities in 2012, which included substantially reducing Paragon’s criticized assets, exceed the year’s operating budget, and maintaining a strong capital position.
Paragon successfully decreased its criticized assets, which include loans recognized to have weaknesses and bank-owned real estate, by 49% in 2012. This accomplishment will not only improve the bank’s net interest margin, it will also reduce non-interest expenses and create a reduction in general expenses for the bank in 2013.
While Paragon focused on reducing its criticized assets, it was also able to exceed the bank’s operating budget for 2012. During the year, Paragon experienced a 20% reduction in nonperforming assets, which included foreclosed real estate and loans that stopped accruing interest, with a recovery rate of 87%.
Paragon maintained a strong capital position and as of December 31, Paragon’s Tier 1 Leverage Ratio, Tier 1 Risk-Based Capital Ratio and Total Risk-Based Capital Ratio were 10.52%, 14.94% and 16.19% respectively.
In 2012, Paragon’s mortgage banking revenue was at an all-time high, increasing from $580,000 to $1 million. Additionally, the bank had another strong year in core deposit generation, including an increase in demand deposits, interest-bearing checking deposits, savings account deposits and money market deposits. Overall, demand deposits increased more than 14% for the year.
“We’re pleased with the progress our board members and team have made during the last year,” said Shaw. “Their efforts are directly reflected in our sustained profitability over the last nine quarters. In 2013, we’ll continue to build on our momentum while focusing on further reducing our criticized assets and continuing to focus on core earnings.”