Live Oak Bank, a digitally-focused bank, will create 204 new jobs in New Hanover County, Governor Roy Cooper announced today. The company will invest $25 million in Wilmington to expand its campus and workforce to support the financial needs of American small business owners.
“The best recruiters for our state are North Carolina companies,” said Governor Cooper. “Live Oak Bank is expanding here because its leaders know how much our talented workforce and quality of life mean to their success and North Carolina’s.”
Headquartered in Wilmington, Live Oak Bank, a subsidiary of Live Oak Bancshares, Inc. [NASDAQ: LOB], is a cloud-based, FDIC-insured bank serving customers in all 50 states. As a leading SBA and USDA lender, Live Oak partners with business owners to build and expand their companies and offers banking products to grow their hard-earned money. The company’s expansion includes construction of a new office building to support additional lending and technology personnel for new products and services.
“Live Oak Bank is proud to call Wilmington home. With more than 900 employees working toward our mission to be America’s small business bank, we are grateful for the support of city, county and state officials for powerful capital investments that will help grow fintech jobs in our community and bring hundreds of dedicated Live Oakers to our campus,” said Live Oak Chairman and CEO James S. (Chip) Mahan, III.
“North Carolina is home to a thriving fintech industry,” said N.C. Commerce Secretary Machelle Baker Sanders. “With the second largest banking center in the nation and a leading state for women in technology, Live Oak has access to a diverse pipeline of talent that will help the company live out its mission to be the bank for small businesses.”
The North Carolina Department of Commerce led the state’s efforts to support Live Oak’s expansion with positions including analysts, data scientists, loan servicing specialists, network engineers, paralegals, and underwriters. Although salaries for the new positions will vary, the intended average annual salary for the new positions is more than $101,000, which exceeds New Hanover County’s annual average wage of $53,421. The project could create a potential annual payroll impact of more than $20.7 million per year for the region.
Live Oak Bank’s project will be facilitated, in part, by a Job Development Investment Grant (JDIG) approved by the state’s Economic Investment Committee earlier today. Over the course of the 12-year term of this grant, the project is estimated to grow the state’s economy by $1.1 billion. Using a formula that takes into account the new tax revenues generated by the new jobs, the JDIG agreement authorizes the potential reimbursement to the company of up to $1,539,750 spread over 12 years. State payments only occur following performance verification by the departments of Commerce and Revenue that the company has met its incremental job creation and investment targets. JDIG projects result in positive net tax revenue to the state treasury, even after taking into consideration the grant’s reimbursement payments to a given company.
Live Oak’s expansion in New Hanover County is classified by the state’s economic tier system as Tier 3. The company’s JDIG agreement also calls for moving $513,250 into the state’s Industrial Development Fund – Utility Account. The Utility Account helps rural communities across the state finance necessary infrastructure upgrades to attract future business.
“Live Oak Bank has been a tremendous community partner,” said N.C. Senator Michael V. Lee. “We’re excited to see them create more great job opportunities for the talented people that want to live and work here.”
“This is phenomenal news for New Hanover County and for the state of North Carolina,” said N.C. Representative Charles Miller. “The $25 million investment made by Live Oak Bank will continue to support our local communities by creating more jobs and stimulating additional economic prosperity in our region.”
In addition to the North Carolina Department of Commerce and the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina, other key partners in the project include the North Carolina General Assembly, North Carolina’s Southeast, New Hanover County, City of Wilmington, Wilmington Business Development and Cape Fear Workforce Development.