FITZGERALD, Ga., Oct. 17, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Colony Bankcorp, Inc. (Nasdaq:CBAN), today reported net income available to shareholders of $2,622,000, or $0.30 per diluted share for the third quarter of 2017 compared to $1,880,000, or $0.22 per diluted share for the comparable 2016 period, while net income available to shareholders for the nine month period ended September 30, 2017 was $6,961,000, or $0.81 per diluted share compared to $5,297,000, or $0.62 per share for the comparable 2016 period.  This increase of 31.41 percent in net income for the comparable year ago period was primarily driven by an increase in net interest income and noninterest income and a reduction in preferred stock dividends and loan loss provision.  "We are delighted to report our highest earnings quarter in a number of years," said Ed Loomis, President and Chief Executive Officer.  "As the economic recovery chugs along, we expect to benefit with increased loan opportunities.  While our operating efficiencies have improved the past several quarters, we continue to explore different initiatives for additional improvement and thus further enhance shareholder value.  We remain optimistic that tax reform proposals will become reality in the near term and also provide a boost to future earnings." 

Capital

Colony continues to maintain a strong regulatory capital position to be categorized as "well-capitalized" by regulatory benchmarks.  At September 30, 2017, the Company's tier one leverage ratio, tier one ratio, total risk-based capital ratio and common equity tier one capital ratio were 9.91 percent, 14.76 percent,15.75 percent and 11.84 percent, respectively, compared to 9.72 percent, 14.33 percent, 15.32 percent  and 11.44 percent, respectively, at June 30, 2017.  The Company's capital ratios were all in excess of regulatory minimums required to be classified as "well-capitalized."

Net Interest Margin 

During the third quarter of 2017, the Company reported net interest income of $9.84 million and a net interest margin of 3.50 percent compared to $9.56 million and 3.56 percent, respectively, for third quarter 2016, while net interest income YTD 2017 was $29.12 million and a net interest margin of 3.45 percent compared to $28.54 million and 3.52 percent, respectively, for the same comparable in 2016.  Second quarter 2017 net interest margin was 3.49 percent, thus a slight increase in net interest margin this quarter.   As we shift more dollars out of lower yielding investments into higher yielding loans, we should continue to realize net interest margin improvement.   

Asset Quality

Asset quality remains solid with marked improvement from a year ago.  Substandard assets that include non-performing assets totaled $30.54 million at September 30, 2017 compared to $33.23 million and $41.49 million, respectively, at December 31, 2016 and September 30, 2016.  Substandard assets adjusted for SBA guarantees to tier one capital plus loan loss reserve ratio was 23.14 percent, 25.67 percent and 31.34 percent, respectively, at September 30, 2017, December 31, 2016 and September 30, 2016.  Non-performing assets increased slightly from the previous quarter end to $13.32 million or 1.72 percent of total loans and other real estate owned as of September 30, 2017.  This compares to $18.79 million or 2.47 percent and $23.80 million or 3.03 percent, respectively, as of December 31, 2016 and September 30, 2016.       

Other real estate ("OREO") totaled $4.52 million at September 30, 2017 compared to $6.44 million and $9.81 million, respectively, at December 31, 2016 and September 30, 2016.   Though these levels remain at an elevated level, we continue to work diligently to dispose these properties at fair value.  There are several pending transactions  that we anticipate closing in the near future to further reduce our OREO holdings. 

In the third quarter of 2017 net charge-offs were $66 thousand, or 0.01 percent of average loans as compared to net charge-offs of $541 thousand, or 0.07 percent of average loans in third quarter 2016, while YTD 2017 net charge-offs were $1,281 thousand, or 0.17 percent of average loans compared to $463 thousand, or 0.06 percent of average loans for the comparable 2016 period.  The loan loss reserve was $7.98 million or 1.04 percent of total loans on September 30, 2017 compared to $8.92 million or 1.18 percent and $9.20 million or 1.19 percent, respectively, at December 31, 2016 and September 30, 2016.  Loan loss reserve methodology resulted in no loan loss provision for three months ended September 30, 2017  compared to $354 thousand for the comparable 2016 period, while YTD 2017 provision for loan losses was $335 thousand compared to $1,062 thousand for the comparable 2016 period.

Noninterest Income

Total noninterest income increased in the comparable periods as noninterest income for nine months ended September 30, 2017 was $7.22 million compared to $7.16 million in the comparable 2016 period, or an increase of 0.80 percent.  Secondary mortgage fee income increased $122 thousand or 24.06 percent, service charges on deposits increased $130 thousand or 4.08 percent and debit card interchange fees increased $144 thousand or 7.95 percent to primarily account for the increase.  Offset to these increases was gains on the sale of securities in 2016 of $385 thousand compared to no gains in 2017.    

Noninterest Expense

Total noninterest expense increased in the comparable periods as noninterest expense for nine months ended September 30, 2017 was $25.41 million compared to $25.24 million for the comparable 2016 period, or an increase of 0.67 percent.  Salaries and employee benefit expenses increased 4.64 percent, occupancy expense was relatively flat and other noninterest expense decreased 5.62 percent for the comparable periods.  The efficiency ratio improved to 69.69 percent for nine months ended September 30, 2017 compared to 71.22 percent for the comparable 2016 period.   The company continues to explore opportunities to improve its' operating efficiency.

Colony Bankcorp, Inc. is a bank holding company headquartered in Fitzgerald, Georgia that consists of one operating subsidiary, Colony Bank.  Colony Bank conducts a general full service commercial, consumer and mortgage banking business through twenty-six offices located in the central, southern and coastal Georgia cities of Albany, Ashburn, Broxton, Centerville, Columbus, Cordele, Douglas, Eastman, Fitzgerald, Leesburg, Moultrie, Quitman, Rochelle, Savannah, Soperton, Statesboro, Sylvester, Thomaston, Tifton, Valdosta and Warner Robins, Georgia. 

Colony Bankcorp, Inc. Common Stock is quoted on the Nasdaq Global Market under the symbol "CBAN".

Certain statements contained in the preceding release that are not statements of historical fact constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 (the "Act"), notwithstanding that such statements are not specifically identified.  In addition, certain statements may be contained in the Company's future filings with the SEC, in press releases, and in oral and written statements made by or with the approval of the Company that are not statements of historical fact and constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Act.  Examples of forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to: (i) projections of revenues, income or loss, earnings or loss per share, the payment or nonpayment of dividends, capital structure and other financial items; (ii) statement of plans and objectives of Colony Bankcorp, Inc. or its management or Board of Directors, including those relating to products or services; (iii) statements of future economic performance; and (iv) statements of assumptions underlying such statements.  Words such as "believes," "anticipates," "expects," "intends," "targeted" and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements but are not the exclusive means of identifying such statements.

Forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those in such statements.  Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date on which such statements are made.  The Company undertakes no obligation to update any forward-looking statement to reflect events or circumstances after the date on which such statement is made, or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.    Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements.

Consolidated Balance Sheets Colony Bankcorp, Inc.
(in thousands)
           
  September 30, 2017   December 31, 2016   September 30, 2016
  (unaudited)   (audited)   (unaudited)
ASSETS          
Cash and Cash Equivalents          
Cash and Due from Banks $ 18,848     $ 28,822     $ 17,803  
Interest-Bearing Deposits   12,752       46,345       13,872  
Investment Securities          
Available for Sale, at Fair Value   338,249       323,658       286,089  
Federal Home Loan Bank Stock, at Cost   3,255       3,010       3,010  
Loans   770,046       754,283       776,117  
Allowance for Loan Losses   (7,977 )     (8,923 )     (9,203 )
Unearned Interest and Fees   (430 )     (361 )     (382 )
    761,639       744,999       766,532  
Premises and Equipment   27,616       27,969       27,745  
Other Real Estate   4,520       6,439       9,812  
Other Intangible Assets   54       81       89  
Other Assets   28,460       29,119       27,865  
Total Assets $ 1,195,393     $ 1,210,442     $ 1,152,817  
           
           
LIABILITIES AND STOCKHOLDERS' EQUITY          
           
Deposits          
Noninterest-Bearing $ 162,706     $ 159,059     $ 138,941  
Interest-Bearing   857,557       885,298       839,649  
    1,020,263       1,044,357       978,590  
Borrowed Money          
Subordinated Debentures   24,229       24,229       24,229  
Other Borrowed Money   56,000       46,000       46,000  
    80,229       70,229       70,229  
           
Other Liabilities   3,299       2,468       3,263  
           
Stockholders' Equity          
Preferred Stock, Stated Value $1,000 a Share;          
Authorized 10,000,000 Shares, Issued 0 Shares          
as of Sept. 30, 2017, 9,360 as of Dec. 31, 2016 and          
14,360 as of Sept. 30, 2016, Respectively   -       9,360       14,360  
Common Stock, Par Value $1 a share; Authorized          
20,000,000 Shares, Issued 8,439,258 Shares as of          
Sept. 30, 2017, Dec. 31, 2016 and Sept. 30, 2016          
Respectively   8,439       8,439       8,439  
Paid in Capital   29,145       29,145       29,145  
Retained Earnings   57,794       51,466       49,582  
Accumulated Other Comprehensive Loss, Net of Tax   (3,776 )     (5,022 )     (791 )
    91,602       93,388       100,735  
Total Liabilities and Stockholders' Equity $ 1,195,393     $ 1,210,442     $ 1,152,817  
           

Consolidated Statements of Income Colony Bankcorp, Inc.
(in thousands except per share data)
 
  Quarter   Year-to-Date
  Three Months Ended   Nine Months Ended
  9/30/2017   9/30/2016   9/30/2017   9/30/2016
  (unaudited)   (unaudited)   (unaudited)   (unaudited)
Interest Income              
Loans, Including Fees $ 9,754   $ 9,810   $ 28,884   $ 29,135
Deposits with Other Banks   52     18     166     79
Investment Securities              
U. S. Government Agencies   1,684     1,266     4,932     3,978
State, County and Municipal   27     30     87     97
Corporate Debt   23     -     59     -
Dividends on Other Investments   38     32     109     97
    11,578     11,156     34,237     33,386
Interest Expense              
Deposits   1,191     1,187     3,559     3,580
Federal Funds Purchased   -     -     3     -
Borrowed Money   544     413     1,554     1,269
    1,735     1,600     5,116     4,849
Net Interest Income   9,843     9,556     29,121     28,537
Provision for Loan Losses   -     354     335     1,062
Net Interest Income After Provision for Loan Losses   9,843     9,202     28,786     27,475
               
Noninterest Income              
Service Charges on Deposits   1,169     1,128     3,315     3,185
Other Service Charges, Commissions and Fees   741     686     2,300     2,104
Mortgage Fee Income   241     254     629     507
Securities Gains (Losses)   -     256     -     385
Other   273     313     974     980
    2,424     2,637     7,218     7,161
Noninterest Expense              
Salaries and Employee Benefits   4,802     4,726     14,467     13,825
Occupancy and Equipment   1,014     1,025     2,965     2,967
Other   2,564     2,903     7,976     8,451
    8,380     8,654     25,408     25,243
               
Income Before Income Taxes   3,887     3,185     10,596     9,393
Income Taxes   1,265     927     3,424     2,907
Net Income   2,622     2,258     7,172     6,486
               
Preferred Stock Dividends   -     378     211     1,189
               
Net Income Available to Common Shareholders $ 2,622   $ 1,880   $ 6,961   $ 5,297
Net Income Per Share of Common Stock              
Basic $ 0.31   $ 0.22   $ 0.82   $ 0.63
Diluted $ 0.30   $ 0.22   $ 0.81   $ 0.62
Cash Dividends Declared Per Share $ 0.025     -   $ 0.075     -
Weighted Average Basic Shares Outstanding   8,439,258     8,439,258     8,439,258     8,439,258
Weighted Average Diluted Shares Outstanding   8,629,523     8,506,268     8,631,566     8,495,752
               

COLONY BANKCORP, INC
FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS (UNAUDITED)
DOLLARS IN THOUSANDS, EXCEPT PER SHARE DATA
                   
    QUARTER ENDED   YEAR-TO-DATE  
EARNINGS SUMMARY   9/30/2017   9/30/2016   9/30/2017   9/30/2016  
Net Interest Income   $   9,843   $   9,556   $   29,121   $   28,537  
Provision for Loan Losses      -       354       335       1,062  
Non-interest Income       2,424       2,637       7,218       7,161  
Non-interest Expense       8,380       8,654       25,408       25,243  
Income Taxes       1,265       927        3,424       2,907  
Net Income       2,622       2,258       7,172       6,486  
Preferred Stock Dividend      -       378       211       1,189  
Net Income Available to                  
Common Shareholders       2,622       1,880       6,961       5,297  
                   
    QUARTER ENDED   YEAR-TO-DATE  
PER COMMON SHARE SUMMARY   9/30/2017   9/30/2016   9/30/2017   9/30/2016  
Common Shares Outstanding       8,439,258       8,439,258       8,439,258       8,439,258  
Weighted Average Basic Shares       8,439,258       8,439,258       8,439,258       8,439,258  
Weighted Average Diluted Shares       8,629,523       8,506,268       8,631,566       8,495,752  
Earnings Per Basic Share (b)   $0.31   $0.22   $0.82   $0.63  
Earnings Per Diluted Share (b)   $0.30   $0.22   $0.81   $0.62  
Cash Dividends Declared Per Share   $0.025     -   $0.075     -  
Common Book Value Per Share   $10.85   $10.23   $10.85   $10.23  
Tangible Common Book Value Per Share   $10.85   $10.22   $10.85   $10.22  
                   
    QUARTER ENDED    YEAR-TO-DATE   
OPERATING RATIOS (1)   9/30/2017   9/30/2016   9/30/2017   9/30/2016   
Net Interest Margin (a)           3.50%           3.56%           3.45%         3.52%  
Return on Average Assets (b)           0.88%           0.65%           0.78%         0.61%  
Return on Average Total Equity (b)           11.57%           7.35%           10.23%         7.03%  
Efficiency (c)           68.06%           72.22%           69.69%         71.22%  
                 

(1)  Annualized(a)  Computed using fully taxable-equivalent net income(b)  Computed using net income available to shareholders(c)  Computed by dividing non-interest expense by the sum of fully taxable-       equivalent net interest income and non-interest income and excluding       security gains/losses.
    QUARTER ENDED
ENDING BALANCES   9/30/2017   9/30/2016
Total Assets   $ 1,195,393     $ 1,152,817  
Loans, Net of Reserves     761,639       766,532  
Allowance for Loan Losses     7,977       9,203  
Intangible Assets     54       89  
Deposits     1,020,263       978,590  
Common Shareholders' Equity     91,602       86,375  
Common Equity to Total Assets     7.66%       7.49%  
Total Equity     91,602       100,735  
Total Equity to Total Assets     7.66%       8.74%  
         

    QUARTER ENDED   YEAR-TO-DATE
AVERAGE BALANCES   9/30/2017   9/30/2016   9/30/2017   9/30/2016
Total Assets   $ 1,196,078     $ 1,151,458     $ 1,196,997     $ 1,157,816  
Loans, Net of Reserves     759,017       756,776       751,849       748,960  
Deposits     1,021,645       977,544       1,027,210       988,483  
Common Shareholders' Equity     90,650       85,603       87,745       82,838  
Total Equity     90,650       102,351       90,762       100,431  
                 
    QUARTER ENDED   YEAR-TO-DATE
ASSET QUALITY   9/30/2017   9/30/2016   9/30/2017   9/30/2016
Nonperforming Loans   $ 8,807     $ 13,987     $ 8,807     $ 13,987  
Nonperforming Assets     13,327       23,799       13,327       23,799  
Substandard Assets     30,539       41,485       30,539       41,485  
Net Loan Chg-offs (Recoveries)     66       541       1,281       463  
Reserve for Loan Loss to Total Loans     1.04%       1.19%       1.04%       1.19%  
Reserve for Loan Loss to Non- performing Loans   90.58%       65.80%       90.58%       65.80%  
Reserve for Loan Loss to Non-performing Assets   59.86%       38.67%       59.86%       38.67%  
Net Loan Chg-offs (Recoveries)                
to Avg. Total Loans     0.01%       0.07%       0.17%       0.06%  
Nonperforming Loans to Total Loans     1.14%       1.80%       1.14%       1.80%  
Nonperforming Assets to Total Assets     1.11%       2.06%       1.11%       2.06%  
Nonperforming Assets to Total Loans                
And Other Real Estate     1.72%       3.03%       1.72%       3.03%  
Substandard Assets to Tier One Capital                
and Allowance for Loan Losses     23.14%       31.34%       23.14%       31.34%  
                 

Quarterly Comparative Data (in thousands, except per share data)
    3Q2017     2Q2017     1Q2017     4Q2016     3Q2016  
Assets $ 1,195,393   $ 1,198,449   $ 1,208,765   $ 1,210,442   $ 1,152,817  
Loans   761,639     767,069     751,056     744,999     766,532  
Deposits   1,020,263     1,026,538     1,044,231     1,044,357     978,500  
Common Shareholders' Equity   91,602     88,992     85,861     84,028     86,375  
Total Equity   91,602     88,992     85,861     93,388     100,735  
Net Income   2,622     2,433     2,117     2,187     2,258  
Net Income Available to          
Common Shareholders   2,622     2,433     1,906     1,883     1,880  
Net Income Per Basic Share   0.31     0.29     0.23     0.22     0.22  
           
           
Key Performance Ratios   3Q2017     2Q2017     1Q2017     4Q2016     3Q2016  
Return on Average Assets (1)   0.88%     0.81%     0.63%     0.64%     0.65%  
Return on Average Total Equity (1)   11.57%     11.10%     8.11%     7.60%     7.35%  
Common Equity to Total Assets   7.66%     7.43%     7.10%     6.94%     7.49%  
Total Equity to Total Assets   7.66%     7.43%     7.10%     7.71%     8.74%  
Net Interest Margin   3.50%     3.49%     3.35%     3.48%     3.56%  
           
(1) Computed using net income available to shareholders
           

 
Contact: Terry L. HesterChief Financial Officer                                                   (229) 426-6000 (Ext 6002)