CLINTON, N.J. (May 10, 2018) – Unity Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ: UNTY), the parent company of Unity Bank, was the top ranked New Jersey community bank on the American Banker magazine list of the Top 200 Publicly Traded Community Banks. Unity was ranked 19th nationally on the respected industry list, which reviewed 633 institutions throughout the U.S.
“We are honored to have Unity climbing the American Banker list as it illustrates the continued financial strength and performance of the bank,” said Unity Bank President & CEO James A. Hughes. “We truly believe that the bank and community grow stronger together because our fiscal health means the bank is better positioned to invest in the community. Our continued success is a tribute to the bank’s sales and service culture, and the diversity of our products.”
The magazine ranked banks and thrifts that had total assets of less than $2 billion as of Dec. 31, 2017 and are publicly traded. Nationally, 633 institutions fit the category for the list. Unity Bank climbed the list from 27th in 2017 to its current ranking.
The ranking is based on three-year average return on equity (ROE), a measure of profitability that calculates how many dollars of profit a company generates with each dollar of shareholders’ equity. The average ROE for the 633 institutions was 6.74 percent. Unity Bancorp’s ROE was 13.24 percent, placing Unity in the top 10 percent of the SNL Financial group.
The impressive showing on the American Banker list comes on the heels of Unity Bank’s best quarter financially in its history, a milestone that Hughes attributes to the continued commitment of the bank’s employees. First quarter earnings were up 64% from the first quarter of 2017, which resulted in Return on Assets (ROA) of 1.53%.
“Unity continues to outperform our peers and we feel our results are a direct result of the hard work and sales efforts of each and every employee,” Hughes said. “For that reason, each quarter that we achieve an ROA of 1.50% or greater, all employees that were employed for the full quarter will receive a bonus check of $250. We foster an entrepreneurial culture at Unity where the employees and bank can grow together and believe staff deserves to enjoy the benefits of our success.”
In December 2017, Unity became one of the first companies nationally to reward employees with the benefits of federal corporate tax reform, providing all staff with $750 bonuses. The employee incentives came as Unity continued to grow its service area, adding a new branch in Ramsey and relocated a branch facility in Phillipsburg, for a total of 18 branch locations. The bank continues to grow its residential and commercial loan portfolios as well with total loans exceeding $1.15 billion. Unity, which will open another new branch in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania this spring, has approximately $1.5 billion in assets and $1 billion in deposits.