Online Banking Login
Login

Financial Press Releases

  • April 20, 2009
    - First Bank Grows to $189 Million in Assets -- Opens Two New Central NJ Branches

  • March 6, 2009
    - First Bank Adds Capital -- Reports Significant Loan and Deposit Growth

  • December 15, 2008
    - First Bank Raises $19 Million and Closes Recapitalization

  • October 27, 2008
    – First Bank Raises $19 Million and Closes Recapitalization; Prepares for Market Expansion

  • October 15, 2008
    – First Bank Reaches Capital Threshold and Receives All Necessary Regulatory Approvals

  • September 18, 2008
    – First Bank Breaks Ground on New Office Building

  • September 11, 2008
    – First Bank to Break Ground on New Office Building

  • June 6, 2008
    – First Bank to Recapitalize with Infusion from Prominent Central NJ Banking Group



April 20, 2009 - First Bank Grows to $189 Million in Assets -- Opens Two New Central NJ Branches

WILLIAMSTOWN, NJ--(MARKET WIRE)--Apr 20, 2009 -- First Bank (OTC BB:FRBA.OB - News) today announced that the Bank had experienced significant growth in the first quarter of 2009. Total assets increased to $189.3 million at March 31, 2009 compared to $62.9 million at December 31, 2008. Deposits also experienced significant growth increasing to $161.1 million at March 31, 2009 compared to $32.9 million at December 31, 2008. Total loans reached $59.6 million at the end of March compared to $40.8 million at year end of 2008.

In the fourth quarter of 2008, a prominent central New Jersey investor group successfully completed a recapitalization of First Bank raising $19.2 million in net new capital. First Bank ended the first quarter of 2009 with total capital of $24.7 million compared to $7.4 million at March 31, 2008. First Bank's book value was $7.25 per share at March 31, 2009.

First Bank's capital structure to support future growth remains solid. At March 31, 2009, First Bank's Tier 1 and risk-based capital ratios exceeded those required by regulatory guidelines to be considered well capitalized. Asset quality remained strong with nonperforming assets to total assets of only 0.05% at March 31, 2009.

First Bank reported a net loss for the first quarter of 2009 of $789,000 or $0.23 per share, as the Bank incurred costs related to its current growth. The Bank's occupancy expense increased as the Bank opened its Lawrence and Ewing offices in Mercer County. In addition, the Bank's compensation expense increased as the Bank added both management, and branch and customer service staff as part of First Bank's expansion plans.

President and Chief Executive Officer James W. Loney discussed first quarter 2009 results. "We were extremely pleased by the community's reception to our new offices in Mercer County as they far surpassed even our most optimistic projections," he stated.

Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Patrick L. Ryan expanded on the results at the new branches. "We stayed open late; we brought the paperwork to the customers' places of business; we modified processes to make sure customers did not wait longer than absolutely necessary; we did whatever it took to meet the great demand for our products and services," he reflected. "I can't tell you how proud I am of the great team we assembled to help run our new branches. Everyone went beyond the call of duty to make these new locations successful. You are starting to hear comments in the marketplace that strong, stable community banks are well positioned to succeed in this environment. Our success in the first quarter is strong support for that theory."

About First Bank

First Bank is a New Jersey, state chartered bank, which conducts its business with three full-service branches in Ewing, Lawrence, and Williamstown, New Jersey. First Bank offers a range of deposit and loan products to individuals and businesses in its Central and Southern New Jersey markets. First Bank's common stock is quoted on the OTC Bulletin Board under the symbol "FRBA."

This news release contains certain forward-looking statements, either expressed or implied, which are provided to assist the reader in understanding anticipated future financial performance. These statements involve certain risks, uncertainties, estimates and assumptions made by management, which are subject to factors beyond the company's control and could impede its ability to achieve these goals. These factors include general economic conditions, trends in interest rates, the ability of our borrowers to repay their loans, and results of regulatory exams, among other factors.

Mar 6, 2009 - First Bank Adds Capital -- Reports Significant Loan and Deposit Growth

First Bank (OTC BB:FRBA.OB - News) Williamstown, New Jersey today announced strong growth in loans and deposits for 2008. Loans grew to $40.3 million at December 31, 2008 compared to $14.3 million at December 31, 2007. The Bank commenced business on April 23, 2007. Deposits also experienced significant growth increasing to $32.9 million at December 31, 2008 compared to $11.2 million for 2007. Total assets reached $62.9 million at the end of 2008 compared to $20.0 million at the end of 2007.

In the fourth quarter of 2008, a prominent central New Jersey investor group successfully completed a recapitalization of First Bank raising $19.2 million in net new capital. First Bank's capital base finished 2008 at $25.4 million compared to $7.6 million at the end of 2007. First Bank's book value was $7.45 per share at December 31, 2008. First Bank's enhanced capital base supported its growth in 2008 and will provide the foundation for its expansion plans for 2009 and beyond.

First Bank reported a net loss for 2008 of $1.5 million. The net loss was expected as First Bank made significant investments in the growth of its franchise. The Bank expects to open two new branches by the end of the first quarter, and move into its permanent facility in Williamstown by mid-year. In addition, the Bank significantly enhanced its management team following the recapitalization.

First Bank was a well capitalized bank at December 31, 2008 with a total risk-based capital ratio of 58.82%, well over the minimum of 10% to be considered well capitalized under regulatory definitions. Asset quality remained strong with nonperforming assets to total assets of only 0.14% at year end 2008.

With continued growth in the Williamstown market, First Bank will add a permanent branch facility there by mid-year. President and Chief Executive Officer James W. Loney discussed First Bank's 2009 expansion plans into the demographically attractive Central New Jersey market. "By the end of March we will have opened full service branches in Lawrence and Ewing, both in Mercer County," he stated. "The investor group that led our recapitalization has quality relationships in the Central New Jersey market through their involvement in strong banking franchises like Yardville National Bank and others. Those relationships will also help drive significant growth for First Bank going forward," he noted.

Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Patrick L. Ryan noted First Bank's strategic emphasis on "A Return to Banking Basics." "Great companies, built for the long run, focus on one or two lines of business," he reflected. "We will accept deposits, help businesses manage cash flow and make loans to qualified community borrowers." He concluded, "As big banks get acquired or taken apart we expect community banks with focused business plans, like First Bank, will be the direct beneficiaries."

About First Bank

First Bank is a New Jersey, state chartered bank, which conducts its business with three full-service branches in Ewing, Lawrence, and Williamstown, New Jersey. First Bank offers a range of deposit and loan products to individuals and businesses in its Central and Southern New Jersey markets. First Bank's common stock is quoted on the OTC Bulletin Board under the symbol "FRBA."

This news release contains certain forward-looking statements, either expressed or implied, which are provided to assist the reader in understanding anticipated future financial performance. These statements involve certain risks, uncertainties, estimates and assumptions made by management, which are subject to factors beyond the company's control and could impede its ability to achieve these goals. These factors include general economic conditions, trends in interest rates, the ability of our borrowers to repay their loans, and results of regulatory exams, among other factors.

December 15, 2008 - First Bank Raises $19 Million and Closes Recapitalization

First Bank (OTC BB:FRBA.OB - News) consummated its capital offering and recapitalization on Friday, October 24, 2008. The investor group raised over $19 million in new capital as part of the transaction. In the offering, investors purchased a unit from First Bank for $7.90 per unit. Each unit entitles a holder to one share of common stock and 1/4 of a warrant to purchase a share. The warrants have a term of five years and a strike price of $9.00 per share.

In accordance with the terms of the recapitalization, First Bank has increased the size of its Board of Directors from 9 to 11. The reconstituted Board contains 7 members from the investment group and 4 members from the original First Bank Board. Lead investor Leslie E. Goodman was named Chairman of the Board. Lead investor Patrick L. Ryan was added to the Board and named Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. As reconstituted, the Board of First Bank now consists of Timothy Anonick, Elbert Basolis, David Gibbons, Leslie E. Goodman, Peter Halstead, Sidney L. Hofing, Glenn Josephs, James Loney, James Meehan, Patrick L. Ryan, and Daniel C. Schwartz.

First Bank expects to open its first Mercer County branch location, in Ewing, New Jersey, in late 2008 or early 2009. The bank has received regulatory approval for the branch, and is completing the fit out of the location. The move to a permanent location in Williamstown, New Jersey should occur during the second quarter of 2009.

"The recapitalized First Bank has over $25 million in equity capital and a clean balance sheet," stated Chairman Leslie E. Goodman. He added, "We are in an excellent position to take advantage of the customer dislocation taking place in the market right now. As banks continue to shrink or get acquired, we will be direct beneficiaries." Furthermore, Mr. Goodman continued, "In addition to the capital, we have the team and the expertise to navigate these rocky waters. Our management and Board, collectively, have over 200 years of banking experience."

President and Chief Executive Officer James Loney added, "Our opportunity is immense. When you think of the organizations in our market that have been acquired in the last 12 months (Wachovia, Sovereign, Commerce, Yardville National, Synergy), it's staggering. The number of customers actively looking for a new banking relationship will likely be higher in the next twelve months than at any other time in memory."

"We are investing and building a platform for growth," stated Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Patrick L. Ryan. "This market requires thoughtfulness and prudence -- we understand that and we will act accordingly. Banking is a marathon, not a sprint; the investments we make and the relationships we build over the next couple of years will create the foundation for a great, super-community bank for years to come."

October 27, 2008 – First Bank Raises $19 Million and Closes Recapitalization; Prepares for Market Expansion

First Bank (OTCBB:FRBA) consummated its capital offering and recapitalization on Friday, October 24, 2008. The investor group raised over $19 million in new capital as part of the transaction. In the offering, investors purchased a unit from First Bank for $7.90 per unit. Each unit entitles a holder to one share of common stock and 1/4 of a warrant to purchase a share. The warrants have a term of five years and a strike price of $9.00 per share.

In accordance with the terms of the recapitalization, First Bank has increased the size of its Board of Directors from 9 to 11. The reconstituted Board contains 7 members from the investment group and 4 members from the original First Bank Board. Lead investor Leslie E. Goodman was named Chairman of the Board. Lead investor Patrick L. Ryan was added to the Board and named Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. As reconstituted, the Board of First Bank now consists of Timothy Anonick, Elbert Basolis, David Gibbons, Leslie E. Goodman, Peter Halstead, Sidney L. Hofing, Glenn Josephs, James Loney, James Meehan, Patrick L. Ryan, and Daniel C. Schwartz.

First Bank expects to open its first Mercer County branch location in Ewing, New Jersey, in late 2008 or early 2009. The bank has received regulatory approval for the branch and is completing the fit out of the location. The move to a permanent location in Williamstown, New Jersey should occur during the second quarter of 2009.

“The recapitalized First Bank has over $25 million in equity capital and a clean balance sheet,” stated Chairman Leslie E. Goodman. He added, “We are in an excellent position to take advantage of the customer dislocation taking place in the market right now. As banks continue to shrink or get acquired, we will be direct beneficiaries.” Furthermore, Mr. Goodman continued, “In addition to the capital, we have the team and the expertise to navigate these rocky waters. Our management and Board, collectively, have over 200 years of banking experience.”

President and Chief Executive Officer James Loney added, “Our opportunity is immense. When you think of the organizations in our market that have been acquired in the last 12 months (Wachovia, Sovereign, Commerce, Yardville National, Synergy), it’s staggering. The number of customers actively looking for a new banking relationship will likely be higher in the next twelve months than at any other time in memory.”

“We are investing and building a platform for growth,” stated Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Patrick L. Ryan. “The market requires thoughtfulness and prudence – we understand that and we will act accordingly. Banking is a marathon, not a sprint; the investments we make and the relationships we build over the next couple of years will create the foundation for a great super-community bank for years to come.”

For questions or comments regarding the bank or the recapitalization, please contact James Loney (856-728 3400; jloney@firstbanknj.com) or Patrick L. Ryan (609 643 0168; patrick.ryan@firstbanknj.com).

October 15, 2008 – First Bank Reaches Capital Threshold and Receives All Necessary Regulatory Approvals

First Bank (OTCBB:FRBA) of Williamstown, New Jersey, announced today that the investor group working on the recapitalization has raised more than the $15 million necessary to consummate the transaction. The bank has received subscription agreements and funds for $16 million through Friday, October 3, 2008. The investor group, led by Leslie E. Goodman and Patrick L. Ryan, expects to receive additional subscriptions over the next two weeks. The capital offering is scheduled to close on Friday, October 17, 2008.

The bank has also received all the necessary regulatory approvals to finalize the transaction. The State of New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance has issued approval for the change in control and for the addition of a new bank branch located in Ewing, NJ. The FDIC issued a letter of non-objection, permitting the transaction to close.

Having received the requisite capital and regulatory approvals, the bank expects to close the transaction on or before October 24, 2008.

“We are excited to close this transaction. We look forward to building a great community banking franchise in central and southern New Jersey,” stated lead investor and future bank chairman Leslie E. Goodman. Mr. Goodman continued, “The upheaval that is taking place at the large investment banks and national commercial banks will create great opportunities for community banks like ours. Many high-quality banking customers will be looking for a new home. We believe our bank – with its clean balance sheet, fresh capital, and experienced management and board – will be perfectly positioned to attract and retain these customers.”

President and CEO James Loney added, “The addition of fresh capital and great people will allow our organization to continue to grow and prosper. Together, our team will be able to achieve great things. The addition of a second bank branch and a larger legal lending limit will create immediate opportunities for us.” Mr. Loney also emphasized the financial strength of the recapitalized bank, “which will have pro forma equity capital estimated at $25 million or more and a loan portfolio with no delinquencies.”

“We have the capital, people and expertise necessary to take advantage of the opportunities created by this current banking environment,” stated lead investor Patrick L. Ryan. “As history has taught us, uncertainty creates opportunity for those with the vision, capabilities, and funding necessary to succeed. We believe that the movement of customers over the next 6-12 months from large-money center conglomerates to stable, well-run community banks may be sustained. Many good community banks will benefit from this transformation, and we hope to be one of the leaders of this group.”

For questions or comments regarding the bank or the recapitalization, please contact James Loney (856-728 3400; jloney@firstbanknj.com) or Patrick L. Ryan (609 643 0168; patrick.ryan@firstbanknj.com).

September 18, 2008 – First Bank Breaks Ground on New Office Building

First Bank (FRBA) broke ground on its new main office today at the intersection of Black Horse Pike and Lake Avenue in Williamstown.

“Although our groundbreaking technically represented the start of construction on our permanent bank location, the fact is that we have actually spent more than a year ‘building’ our bank – forging relationships with our customers and developing services to meet the needs of the community,” said James W. Loney, President and Chief Executive Officer of First Bank. “Now that we’ve ‘built’ our bank, we look forward to constructing one that will serve our current customers and other area residents.”

First Bank opened in April of 2007 and is currently located in the Williamstown Shopping Center at 1229 South Black Horse Pike. In its temporary location, the bank has grown to provide $29 million in loans and $27 million in deposits. In June of 2008, First Bank entered into a recapitalization agreement with a group of bank investors led by Leslie E. Goodman and
Patrick L. Ryan, allowing the bank to apply to the New Jersey Department of Banking and the FDIC for a branch location in Ewing, New Jersey.

“The past 16 months have been outstanding and eventful for First Bank as we have experienced steady financial growth and made an agreement to acquire additional capital,” said Loney. “Now, as we prepare to begin construction on our main office and make preparations to build a branch office in Ewing, we expect to experience even more growth in the months ahead.”

Designed by Taus & Associates of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, First Bank’s 3,750-square foot office building is scheduled for completion in early 2009.


September 11, 2008 – First Bank to Break Ground on New Office Building

First Bank (FRBA) announced today that the company will break ground on its new main office on Thursday, September 18, 2008, at 12:30 p.m. The Groundbreaking Ceremony will be held on the site of the new office, at the intersection of Black Horse Pike and Lake Avenue in Williamstown.

“Although our groundbreaking technically represents the start of construction on our permanent bank location, the fact is that we have actually spent more than a year ‘building’ our bank – forging relationships with our customers and developing services to meet the needs of the community,” said James W. Loney, President and Chief Executive Officer of First Bank. “Now that we’ve ‘built’ our bank, we look forward to constructing one that will serve our current customers and other area residents.”

First Bank opened in April of 2007 and is currently located in the Williamstown Shopping Center at 1229 South Black Horse Pike. In its temporary location, the bank has grown to provide $29 million in loans and $27 million in deposits. In June of 2008, First Bank entered into a recapitalization agreement with a group of bank investors led by Leslie E. Goodman and
Patrick L. Ryan, allowing the bank to apply to the New Jersey Department of Banking and the FDIC for a branch location in Ewing, New Jersey.

“The past 16 months have been outstanding and eventful for First Bank as we have experienced steady financial growth and made an agreement to acquire additional capital,” said Loney. “Now, as we prepare to begin construction on our main office and make preparations to build a branch office in Ewing, we expect to experience even more growth in the months ahead.”

Designed by Taus & Associates of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, First Bank’s 3,750-square foot office building is scheduled for completion in early 2009.


June 6, 2008 – First Bank to Recapitalize with Infusion from Prominent Central NJ Banking Group

First Bank (FRBA) announced today that it has entered into an agreement to recapitalize the bank with an investment of $15 - $30 million in additional capital from a group of central New Jersey bank investors led by Leslie E. Goodman and Patrick L. Ryan.

The investment will be structured as a secondary offering of securities by First Bank. The terms of the offering will provide for the sale of units of the Bank, with each unit to consist of a share of common stock and ¼ of a warrant to purchase an additional share of common stock. The price of the offering will be $7.90 per unit. The warrants will have a term of five years, and an exercise price of $9.00 per share. The offering is expected to close in August or September of 2008, and is subject to regulatory approval.

As part of the transaction, First Bank will reconstitute its Board of Directors. The Bank will increase the size of the Board from 9 to 11. Should the investor group raise $18 million or more in new capital, 7 of the 11 Board members will be from the investment group. In addition to the modification to the Board, First Bank will name Leslie E. Goodman as its Chairman and retain Patrick L. Ryan as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. James Loney, First Bank President and CEO, will remain in that position.

The bank will use the new capital to build a central and south New Jersey community banking franchise to go along with the growth First Bank has seen in its first year of operation. The Bank plans to open a new office location in Ewing, New Jersey shortly after the close of the transaction.

“We are excited about this partnership with First Bank” stated lead investor Les Goodman. “Our group perceives a real void in the marketplace in central New Jersey for a good, commercially-focused, sizable community-banking franchise. We believe this investment in First Bank will create the platform we need to take advantage of this exciting market opportunity.” Mr. Goodman has over 40 years of commercial and community banking experience having held leadership positions at First Union Bank (now known as Wachovia) and its predecessors First National State Bank and First Fidelity. He was also a key Director at Admiralty Bank in Palm Beach County, Florida and now serves as Vice Chairman of Anchor Commercial Bank in Florida.

Other key business leaders, including several individuals directly involved with the management and oversight of Yardville National Bank, are part of the investment group. In addition to Mssrs. Goodman and Ryan, members of the investment group include Elbert Basolis, Stephen Carman, Gerry Finn, Peter Halstead, Sidney Hofing, Glenn Josephs, Michael Koretsky, Dr. Eli Mordechai, Tony Privatera, John Strydesky, Chris Vernon, and Leo Zamparelli.

“This transaction provides the necessary capital and additional banking experience to create a highly profitable community banking organization.” noted First Bank CEO James Loney.

“We believe this is a great investment opportunity” commented Lead investor Patrick L. Ryan. “This organization will have great opportunities for growth. As a clean, well-capitalized institution operating at a time when many banks are dealing with internal issues, we believe we’ll have a real advantage in the marketplace.” Mr. Ryan’s experience includes investment banking (Goldman Sachs), management consulting (Bain and Company), and community banking (Yardville National Bank).

The company expects to have an offering memorandum available for potential investors in June 2008. Subscriptions will be solicited during July and August 2008, and the recapitalization is expected to close in late August or September of 2008.

Hovde Financial acted as financial advisor to the lead investors. The law firm of Windels Marx Lane and Mittendorf LLP provided legal counsel to the lead investors. Sheshunoff and Company and CBIA Advisors, Inc. acted as financial advisors to First Bank and Archer and Greiner, P.C. provided legal counsel.

For more information regarding the recapitalization, please contact Paul Fitzgerald (609-643-4901; paul.fitzgerald@firstbanknj.com) or Patrick L. Ryan (609 643 0168; patrick.ryan@firstbanknj.com).