Plans progressing for Eclipse Bank property in St. MatthewsBy Ed Green, Business First Staff Writer, June 6, 2006
Startup Eclipse Bank, Inc. is ahead of budget as officials prepared to break ground this week for the bank's headquarters and sole office.
The bank will be located at the northwest corner of the intersection of Chenoweth Land and Frankfort Avenue.
Following initial site work, Eclipse officials will "be mourning the takedown" of the former White Castle restaurant building located on the property, according to John Pendergrass, president and CEO of Eclipse. The building has been vacant since the restaurant closed in 2002.
Construction of the two-story bank building that will replace the White Castle will begin in July and is expected to be completed by the end of the year.
The final design work for the project has not been finalized. Pendergrass said, adding that Berry-Prindle Architects of Louisville is working on the project and soon will select a general contractor.
Eclipse will invest nearly $3 million in the project. That includes the $400,000 the bank paid to acquire the White Castle property, which was held by a trust administered by PNC Bank.
The purchase of the property closed in January, according to online records of the Jefferson County Property Valuation Administrator.
Bank‚Äôs growth is ‚Äėahead of budget‚Äô
The timing for the opening of the new facility is not very important to officials with Eclipse, which began operating in a temporary office on Chenoweth Lane late last year, Pendergrass said.
Since it‚Äôs founding the bank has grown to 13 employees from seven. The bank‚Äôs deposits have grown from $300,000 in December ‚Äď primarily from directors and other stockholders ‚Äď to about $5 million. The bank also has about $7 million in loans outstanding.
The business plan approved by the Kentucky Office of Financial Institutions to obtain a state charter sets a goal for Eclipse‚Äôs deposits to reach about $25 million to $30 million by the end of the year and $55 million to $60 million in 2007.
Pendergrass said the bank already is turning a profit and is ‚Äúahead of budget on the bottom line,‚ÄĚ despite not yet buying advertising to build business in the community.
He declined to disclose the company‚Äôs profit figures. ‚ÄúThings are going great from my perspective,‚ÄĚ Pendergrass said.
Location has been good for business
Much of the growth in deposits and loans has come from referrals from the bank‚Äôs more than 75 stockholders and from customers in the St. Matthews area, Pendergrass said.
Growth also has resulted from ‚Äúthe buzz‚ÄĚ surrounding the planned location, he added.
His wife, Mitzi Pendergrass, who is chief operating officer and executive vice president of retail banking, said many customers and area residents want to share their memories of the St. Matthews icon, giving the bank a recognition in the community it might not otherwise have.
‚ÄúI like to say it‚Äôs the gift that keeps on giving,‚ÄĚ she said.