The comeback of CADENCE BANK

East Mississippi relishes its role as a regional operations center with its rapid return to prominence

MBJ Feb. 21 story, by Ted Carter, was just one of many describing how Cadence Bank resurrected itself from near obscurity with a series of keen business moves.

The rescuers of once-distressed Cadence Bank have moved the regional banking company’s headquarters from Starkville to Birmingham, Ala., but are living up to pledges to make Starkville a hub for the operations end of an expanded community banking business, economic development leaders say.

The new $4.1 billion Cadence Bank, N.A., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Cadence Bancorp, LLC, has grown significantly since coming back from near extinction in the fall of 2010, when federal regulators were demanding the bank greatly increase reserve capital or undergo foreclosure. Since formalizing its acquisition by a Houston-based bank investment group in the spring, Cadence has opened a bank branch in Houston and acquired much larger Birmingham regional banking company Superior Bank in an FDIC-assisted deal.

Cadence, which has 38 locations in Mississippi, Tennessee, Alabama, Florida and Georgia, added 73 retail branches in Alabama and Florida with the acquisition of Superior Bank. In addition, 24 consumer finance offices came with the Superior acquisition.

The Superior locations took on the Cadence name in early November.

The rapid return to prominence for the 126-year-old Cadence makes it one of the Mississippi Business Journal’s “Stories of the Year.”

It’s been an encouraging comeback for Starkville economic development officials to witness. They had feared the loss of a significant cog in the wheels that keep the city’s economy moving. But today, rather than a depleted Cadence workforce, the bank has added about 40 employees.

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