Georgia-Carolina Bancshares Reports Record First Quarter Earnings And Increase In Quarterly Dividend

AUGUSTA, Ga., April 23, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Georgia-Carolina Bancshares, Inc. (OTCBB:GECR), parent company of First Bank of Georgia, today reported 2013 first quarter net income of $2,307,000 ($0.65 per diluted common share), compared to $1,284,000 ($0.36 per diluted common share) for the three months ended March 31, 2012. This net income represents a 16.36% return on average equity and a 1.94% return on average assets (both annualized). Book value totaled $16.40 per common share at March 31, 2013, up from $14.28 at March 31, 2012.

Remer Y. Brinson III, President and CEO of the Company, stated, "We are pleased to report a record quarter of net income. Due to the continued improvement in our asset quality, we have conservatively reduced our loan loss reserve, in accordance with sound banking practices and proper accounting standards. However, we continue to maintain a healthy loan loss reserve and see improvement in asset quality. In addition, non-interest income included an $806,000 benefit on an insurance policy owned by the bank."

"Deposit growth remains strong and grew 6.36% (annualized) during the first quarter of the year. Loans, excluding loans held for sale, increased slightly during the first quarter and totaled $266,430,000."

Brinson continued, "We are excited about the opening of our seventh branch location which is located in the Kroger shopping center in Evans, Ga. This office will be open in early May and we look forward to serving this vibrant market. Mrs. Phyllis Salazar, Vice President and Office Manager, will be relocating from our West Town Office to deliver the same outstanding service that she and First Bank are known for by our history."

Georgia-Carolina Bancshares' Board of Directors declared a quarterly cash dividend of $0.045 per share of common stock payable on May 14, 2013, to shareholders of record as of May 7, 2013. "This dividend represents a 12.5% increase in the $0.04 cash dividend paid in each of the previous four quarters," Brinson stated. "This increased dividend is a reflection of the stability of Georgia-Carolina Bancshares, Inc. and reflects a 1.28% return (annualized) on the last traded stock price of $14.10."

Georgia-Carolina Bancshares' common stock is quoted on the OTC Bulletin Board under the symbol "GECR". First Bank of Georgia conducts banking operations through offices in Richmond County (Augusta), Columbia County (Evans and Martinez), and McDuffie County (Thomson), Georgia and operates mortgage origination offices in Augusta and Savannah, Georgia.

This press release may contain "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, which can generally be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as "believes," "expects," "may," "will," "should," "anticipates," "plans" or similar expressions to identify forward-looking statements, and are made on the basis of management's plans and current analyses of the Company, its business and the industry as a whole. These forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties, including, but not limited to, economic and market conditions, competition, interest rate sensitivity and exposure to regulatory and legislative changes, and other risks and uncertainties described in the Company's periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Although we believe that the assumptions underlying the forward-looking statements are reasonable, any of the assumptions could prove to be inaccurate. Therefore, we can give no assurance that the results contemplated in the forward-looking statements will be realized. The inclusion of this forward-looking information should not be construed as a representation by the Company or any person that the future events, plans, or expectations contemplated by the Company will be achieved. The Company undertakes no obligation to update publicly or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.
Consolidated Balance Sheets
(dollars in thousands, except share and per share data)
  March 31, December 31,
  2013 2012
Cash and due from banks  $ 21,524  $ 30,279
Securities available-for-sale  138,302  132,760
Loans  266,430  265,831
Allowance for loan losses  (5,490)  (5,954)
Loans, net  260,940  259,877
Loans held for sale at fair value  34,295  48,432
Bank-owned life insurance  10,085  10,001
Bank premises and fixed assets  9,119  8,790
Accrued interest receivable  1,754  1,772
Other real estate owned, net of allowance  5,235  5,876
Federal Home Loan Bank stock  697  1,865
Other assets  7,758  6,523
Total assets  $ 489,709  $ 506,175
Non-interest bearing  $ 71,995  $ 70,880
NOW accounts  55,326  57,482
Savings  63,594  64,236
Money market accounts  67,875  54,982
Time deposits of $100,000, and over  107,407  111,537
Other time deposits  57,385  57,839
Total deposits  423,582  416,956
Federal Home Loan Bank and other borrowings  --   25,028
Repurchase agreements  2,959  3,333
Other liabilities  4,862  4,533
Total liabilities  431,403  449,850
Shareholders' equity    
Preferred stock, par value $.001; 1,000,000 shares authorized; none issued  --   -- 
Common stock, par value $.001; 9,000,000 shares authorized; 3,555,283 and 3,528,296 shares issued and outstanding  4  4
Additional paid-in-capital  15,777  15,687
Retained earnings  41,342  39,177
Accumulated other comprehensive income   1,183  1,457
Total shareholders' equity  58,306  56,325
Total liabilities and shareholders' equity  $ 489,709  $ 506,175
Consolidated Statements of Income
(dollars in thousands, except per share amounts)
  Three Months Ended
  March 31,
Interest income 2013 2012
Interest and fees on loans  $ 3,884  $ 4,611
Interest on taxable securities  514  514
Interest on nontaxable securities  116  111
Interest on Federal funds sold and other interest  6  20
Total interest income  4,520  5,256
Interest expense    
Interest on time deposits of $100,000 or more  282  470
Interest on other deposits  281  377
Interest on funds purchased and other borrowings  6  225
Total interest expense  569  1,072
Net interest income  3,951  4,184
Provision for loan losses  (602)  305
Net interest income after provision for loan losses  4,553  3,879
Noninterest income    
Service charges on deposits  370  356
Mortgage banking activities  2,004  2,108
Gain on sale of securities  13  --
Other income/loss  1,402  457
Total noninterest income  3,789  2,921
Noninterest expense    
Salaries and employee benefits  3,074  2,942
Occupancy expenses  368  397
Other real estate expenses  159  212
Other expenses  1,612  1,415
Total noninterest expense  5,213  4,966
Income before income taxes  3,129  1,834
Income tax expense  822  550
Net income   $ 2,307  $ 1,284
Net income per share of common stock    
Basic  $ 0.65  $ 0.36
Diluted  $ 0.65  $ 0.36
Dividends per share of common stock  $ 0.04  $ -- 
CONTACT: Remer Y. Brinson III         President & CEO         First Bank of Georgia         3527 Wheeler Rd         Augusta, GA 30909         office (706) 731-6600         fax (706) 731-6601