American Riviera Bank (OTC Markets: ARBV) announced unaudited net income of $1,303,000 ($0.48 per share) for the year ended December 31, 2015, compared to $1,569,000 ($0.59 per share) for the year ended December 31, 2014. Pre-tax, unaudited, net income excluding merger related costs for the year ended December 31, 2015 was $3,022,000, which is 18% better than the $2,567,000 recorded for the same reporting period last year. The Bank will expense remaining, non-recurring, merger related costs in the first quarter of 2016, but will continue to separately identify the amount of such costs for core earnings transparency.

The Bank saw strong loan demand in 2015 with total loans outstanding reaching $212 million on December 31, 2015, a 28% increase from December 31, 2014. The aforementioned loan growth enabled the Bank to grow net interest income by 15% in 2015 compared to 2014. American Riviera Bank's focus on building relationships throughout the community has resulted in outstanding deposit growth. Average deposits increased 17% in 2015 compared to 2014, with total deposits reaching $219 million at December 31, 2015. Average non-interest bearing demand deposits grew 33% in 2015 compared to 2014, and now represent 33% of total deposits at December 31, 2015.

Jeff DeVine, President and Chief Executive Officer, stated, "2015 was a very busy year for American Riviera Bank and our clients. We saw strong growth in loans, deposits, and income before merger related costs. We are excited for 2016, as the recently completed merger has created a larger branch footprint, a more robust product offering, and over 60 experienced bankers to serve residents and businesses in the greater Santa Barbara area."

As of December 31, 2015, American Riviera Bank has $249 million in total assets, and maintains a strong capital position with a Tier 1 Leverage Ratio of 12%; well above the regulatory guideline of 5% for well capitalized institutions. For 2015, due to non-recurring, merger related costs of $571,000, the Bank recorded a return on average assets of 0.56% and a return on average equity of 4.67%. The book value of one share of American Riviera Bank stock is $10.56 at December 31, 2015, an increase from $10.11 at December 31, 2014.

Company Profile

American Riviera Bank is a full-service community bank focused on serving the lending and deposit needs of businesses and consumers in Santa Barbara and the surrounding communities. The state-chartered bank opened for business on July 18, 2006, with the support of local shareholders. Offices are located at 1033 Anacapa Street in Santa Barbara, 525 San Ysidro Road in Montecito, and 5880 Calle Real in Goleta. As a result of the merger, American Riviera Bank became the second-largest community bank based in the city of Santa Barbara with assets over $400 million, approximately $350 million in loans and over $375 million in deposits.

For three consecutive years the Bank has been named a "Premier Performer" by the Findley Reports. As of September 30, 2015, the Bank was rated five stars by BauerFinancial.

Statements concerning future performance, developments or events concerning expectations for growth and market forecasts, and any other guidance on future periods, constitute forward looking statements that are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ materially from stated expectations. Specific factors include, but are not limited to, effects of interest rate changes, ability to control costs and expenses, impact of consolidation in the banking industry, financial policies of the US government, and general economic conditions.

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