In black, but no one’s mourning

Bank of Virginia is back in the black.

The first quarter of 2012 marked the Midlothian-based bank’s first profitable quarter since 2009. Since then, it has battled millions in bad loans and a recent regime change.

Bank of Virginia’s $345,000 first quarter profit, disclosed in call reports filed with the FDIC, was also its best first quarter in five years. It hasn’t had a profitable year since 2007.

Whether the 10-year-old bank has turned a corner remains to be seen. It still has about $7 million in past due and non-accrual loans to deal with, although that number is down from $11 million a year ago.

Its turn back to profitability is being led by new owners and an executive team that brought with it millions in fresh capital and cleaned house last year while also cutting expenses.

Armed with $10 million to cushion the struggling bank’s capital base, Cordia Bancorp bought control of the bank in late 2010.

Jack Zoeller, who steered the Cordia buyout and then took over as chief executive, announced last year that the bank would cut up to 15 percent of its workforce and close a branch.

“We’ve re-staffed tremendously,” Zoeller said. “All six of the top officers of the bank are new since the end of 2010.”

Five new loan officers also came on last year. The bank has 40 employees, down from 54 in 2010.

“That’s part of what’s paying off here,” Zoeller said.

Zoeller was limited in what he would say about the first quarter results because the bank’s official SEC earnings report has not been released.

Bank of Virginia has about $165 million in total assets, down from $204 million a year ago.

It had $106 million in total loans at the end of the first quarter, down from $130 million a year ago but up from the end of 2011.

The rise over the past three months is due in part to a lending campaign the bank has been pushing to small and medium-size businesses.

With a target of $40 million in lending to business this year, Zoeller said the bank’s sweet spot in business lending is $500,000 and up.

“We’ve been out there [pushing the loan campaign],” said Zoeller. “It’s the best loan activity we’ve seen in a couple years.”



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Interesting….profit sounds great, however, I wonder if it will be sustainable since 87% of their profit was derived from gains in the portfolio.


BOVA has definitely turned a corner, with a new management team, updates to their web-based functions, and cutting of unnecessary fat. The new regim is engaging in smart practices cutting their bad loan debt by 4 million dollars and swinging to an impressively profitable quarter–all in a very short period of time. The outlook is bright moving forward.


Don’t buy it. I’ve been there since the beginning and I’m shopping for a new bank right now. Ever since they brought over the new people the whole thing is going right in the toilet. I give it 5 years at most.


I actually feel more secure with my money in the Bank of Virginia since the new people came in. They are very pleasant to deal with and I am keeping with them. I don’t understand Brett’s comments. He must have investment interests in them doing badly.


I’m with you, Brett. In fact, I am shocked by the positive comments posted. Everyone used to be so happy there and pleasant to deal with. I see some of the same faces but they don’t look the same. 🙁 Like a black cloud…different bank…bad vibe.


I agree with Sue. I haven’t had a single issue with my banking experiences. And I am happy to hear they are finally making more fiscally responsible financial decisions considering I keep my money there. I am shocked by the negative comments. Surely others who bank there have had similar positive, or at least not such viscerally negative outcomes. Any thoughts?

Interesting comments. I am going to stick with my earlier assessment that BOVA has turned a corner. It seems to me that Roxanne and Brett have their own issues to work through. The bank is turning a profit for the first time in 5 years; that can only be good for the community as more money is kept in circulation. Sometimes it is difficult to deal with changes in familiarity, but it is obvious the new management team is far superior to the old. I am impressed with the turn-around. If they had stayed on the same track THEN they… Read more »

No axe to grind…just have the ability to feel tension so thick I can cut it with a knife and read and interpret a call report. Their call report reflects 54 employees in 2010 at a cost of $63,444 per employee average as opposed to 38 employees in 2011 at a cost of $88,105 per employee. “Restaffing” comes at a premium. Shrinking the balance sheet helps too.