Bank Watch

Aquesta gets regulatory approvals for 1st branch outside of Charlotte region

Jim Engel, CEO of Aquesta Bank, stands inside the bank’s Cornelius headquarters. On Monday, Aquesta Bank said it has received regulatory approvals to open a branch in Wilmington, marking the bank’s first branch outside of the Charlotte metropolitan area.
Jim Engel, CEO of Aquesta Bank, stands inside the bank’s Cornelius headquarters. On Monday, Aquesta Bank said it has received regulatory approvals to open a branch in Wilmington, marking the bank’s first branch outside of the Charlotte metropolitan area. dlaird@charlotteobserver.com

Aquesta Bank said Monday it has received regulatory approvals to open a previously announced branch in Wilmington, marking the Cornelius-based bank’s first branch outside of the Charlotte metropolitan area.

The location, set to open in the second quarter of this year, adds to seven existing Aquesta branches in Charlotte, Davidson, Huntersville, Cornelius and Mooresville. The new branch will also expand the community bank’s presence in Wilmington, where it currently has insurance operations and a loan production office.

Aquesta said it plans to consolidate both of those operations in the new branch, which it is purchasing from Gateway Bank.

It’s the latest expansion for Aquesta, founded in 2006.

Last year, the bank took its branch operations outside of its traditional Lake Norman footprint for the first time with the purchase of a SouthPark branch from CertusBank.

Aquesta says its Wilmington presence goes back more than eight years, when it began offering services through insurance subsidiary Aquesta Insurance Services. The new branch is less than half a mile from the building that has housed its insurance operations and loan production office.

At the end of last year, Aquesta had $293 million in assets, up about 11 percent from a year earlier. In the Charlotte metropolitan area, it is the 19th-largest bank by deposits, according to the latest Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. rankings.

Deon Roberts: 704-358-5248, @DeonERoberts

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