President's Message, August 2017
On June 26th of this year, your bank celebrated its 11th anniversary. We should all be proud of the River Valley Community Bank franchise we have created during this 11 year period. Despite unprecedented economic challenges during this time, we have established a great bank to serve our communities - and one that has prospered in doing so.
We are pleased with the following accomplishments so far in 2017:
- Record earnings –After tax earnings of $1.34 million for the six months ended June 30th represent a record high.
- Our return on average shareholder equity (ROE) grew to 10.59% in the second quarter and compares favorably to 8.60% from the second quarter of last year.
- Loan growth – Our loan portfolio has grown to a record $136.0 million as of June 30, 2017, an increase of 21% from June 30, 2016.
- Grass Valley branch relocation – In June, we closed escrow on a lot and development plans are underway to build our own permanent branch facility to better serve the Grass Valley market. Our plans have been approved by the City of Grass Valley; and if all goes well, we hope to relocate our Grass Valley team into our new office next fall. We are very encouraged by local feedback on our project and believe our new location will significantly improve our visibility there.
- Bank holding company –We have completed the formation of our bank holding company, River Valley Community Bancorp, which provides flexibility in funding future growth and puts us on a level playing field with other banks that have this corporate structure.
- Stock symbol change – In tandem with the formation of River Valley Community Bancorp, we changed our stock trading symbol to RVCB, which is more reflective of our brand.
- Shareholder value – Our stock has appreciated by 59% this year alone based on recent trades occurring at $17.75 per share. Our founding shareholders who continue to own our stock have experienced a 177% increase, nearly tripling their original investment. This increase equates to an annualized rate of return of approximately 9.7% over the past 11 years.
I also want to comment on other important bank news you may have heard. In June, Axel Karlshoej retired from his position on our board of directors. He served on the board since the bank's inception, and working with him has been an honor. Axel brought significant wisdom and experience to our Board. Notably, he provided the catalyst for opening our Grass Valley office by initiating meetings and making introductions with key business leaders there. While his council will be missed in the formal board capacity, Axel has made it clear that he will continue to be available to assist our board and management team as needed. We are grateful for his service!
In conjunction with Axel's retirement, the bank also announced the appointment of Larry Raber to the board. Larry recently retired as a partner with Crowe Horwath LLP, where he concluded his 40 year career providing audit and advisory services to clients in the banking industry. Larry is well known by our bank's board and management team and is well respected within the industry. We are fortunate to have someone with Larry's knowledge, skillset, and experience join our already strong board!
In closing, your bank remains well positioned to serve its markets and grow. We have created a franchise that separates us from others by offering a high quality local banking experience that is appreciated by our customers. Our accomplishments are a function of the support provided by our board and the efforts of our committed team members who work hard for our customers every day!
Please enjoy the remainder of your summer; and as always, thanks for your support of our bank!
John M. Jelavich, President & Chief Executive Officer
Forward Looking Statements: This document may contain comments and information that constitute forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed in or implied by such statements. Forward-looking statements speak only as to the date they are made. The Bank does not undertake to update forward-looking statements to reflect circumstances or events that occur after the date the forward-looking statements are made.