Conway-based Home BancShares Inc., the owner of Centennial Bank, reported Thursday a record first-quarter profit of $27.3 million, or 42 cents per diluted share, up 56 percent from $17.5 million, or 31 cents per diluted share, a year ago.
Excluding $849,000 in merger expenses from its recent $280 million purchase of Liberty Bancshares Inc. of Jonesboro, diluted earnings per share came to 43 cents, the company said.
"The Company has achieved yet another historically record quarter during the first quarter of 2014," Chairman John Allison said in a statement. "During the first quarter, the Company exhibited a notable diluted earnings per share metric of $0.43 per share. Our team continues to be dedicated on working toward recognizing the anticipated cost savings as quickly as possible from last quarter's acquisition of Liberty."
For the fourth quarter of 2013, the bank reported in January a 23 percent drop in net income to $13 million from $16.9 million in the same quarter the year before, attributing the decline in earnings to its Liberty purchase, a deal that closed in October.
Home BancShares will conduct a conference call to talk about the results at 1 p.m., which is accessible by calling (888) 317-6016 and asking for the Home BancShares conference call. The call also can be accessed live or in recorded version on the company’s website at www.homebancshares.com.