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Live Oak's Latest Stock Offering Could Raise More Than $100M

By Cece Nunn, posted Aug 9, 2017
Live Oak announced a public offering of 4.5 million shares this week for the first time since the company launched its IPO in 2015.

Wilmington-based Live Oak Bancshares Inc. (NASDAQ: LOB), parent company of Live Oak Bank and Live Oak Ventures, announced Wednesday it had priced an underwritten public offering of the shares of its voting common stock at $23 per share for aggregate gross proceeds of about $103.5 million. Net proceeds, after underwriting discounts and commissions and expenses, are expected to be about $98.3 million, according to a news release.

The release said the company also has granted the underwriters a 30-day option to purchase up to an additional 675,000 shares, which would result in additional net proceeds of $14.8 million, if exercised in full.

Live Oak intends to use the net proceeds from the offering to make investments in the bank and in its non-bank subsidiaries, to enhance its capital position and that of the bank and for general corporate purposes, according to the release. The offering is expected to close on or about Aug. 14, subject to satisfaction of customary closing conditions.

The offering is consistent with the growth the company has experienced over the past couple years, said Brett Caines, CFO of Live Oak Bancshares Inc., on Wednesday.

"We wanted to be able to continue that growth, continue to be a very innovative bank, invest in our infrastructure and all really for the primary purpose of continuing to do what we do, which is help small businesses realize the American dream and enable them to succeed, as well as help them solve some of the technological challenges the banking industry tends to face," Caines said.

On July 26, Live Oak reported second quarter earnings of $9.8 million, or 27 cents per diluted share, compared to $123,000 for the second quarter of 2016.  The company achieved record-level production in the second quarter with loan and lease originations of $586.5 million.

A lot of Live Oak's loans are for the purpose of buying real estate, said Caines, giving the examples of small business owners who are planning to build veterinary or dental practices. Other verticals for Live Oak include accounting and tax firms, agriculture, educational services, family entertainment centers, funeral homes, government contracting, hotels, insurance, investment advisory, independent pharmacies, renewable energy, self-storage, senior care and wine and craft beverages.

Live Oak also leases solar panels, mainly to solar panel developers, Caines said.

"We've done a lot [of solar leasing] up in the Northeast because there's a big push for renewable energy so it's a very attractive product there," he said.

The latest stock offering will allow the company, which currently has 517 employees, to continue adding to its workforce in Wilmington and expanding into profitable realms.

"We see lots of opportunity out there," Caines said.

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