First Horizon sells IberiaBank office in Bentonville for $3M; plans market consolidation (UPDATED)

by Paul Gatling ([email protected]) 2,419 views 

Memphis, Tenn.-based bank holding company First Horizon Corp., the parent company of First Horizon Bank/IberiaBank, closed a deal Tuesday (June 8) to sell its Bentonville banking office at 706 S. Walton Blvd. for $3 million.

Publicly traded First Horizon Corp. and its subsidiary, First Horizon, entered the Arkansas market in 2020 by acquiring Louisiana-based IberiaBank Corp. IberiaBank offices — 16 throughout Arkansas — will transition to the First Horizon name later this year following operating systems conversion.

Jonesboro developer Haag Brown Commercial Real Estate is the Bentonville building’s new owner. Company principal Joshua Brown said the firm would release development plans for the 2.8-acre property in the coming days.

Zac Qualls of Haag Brown Commercial in Jonesboro represented the buyer in the transaction. Alan Cole and Wade Smith with Colliers Arkansas in Rogers represented the seller.

Jamey Vaught, First Horizon/IberiaBank’s Northwest Arkansas market president, said the bank would lease back approximately 7,000-square-feet and continue to operate a full-service banking center at the location. The building sits across the street from the Walmart Home Office and near the city’s planned 8th Street Gateway Park. In addition, he said the bank is making a substantial investment in a significant renovation of its space to create a “fresh, modern, and inviting” banking center.

IberiaBank bought the building in December 2017 for $1.25 million. Vaught said about half of the building is vacant.

In addition, Vaught said the bank is consolidating its Northwest Arkansas market footprint from four to two branches. Besides Bentonville, the company has branch locations in Fayetteville (3430 Wedington Drive), Rogers (100 S. 28th St.) and Springdale (2422 E. Robinson Ave.).

“In line with banking industry trends, changing clients’ banking behaviors and as part of a companywide efficiency effort, we are consolidating our banking centers in Washington and Benton counties in the coming months,” Vaught said in a statement. “Our Rogers and Springdale locations will fold into our Bentonville and Fayetteville offices. We are particularly excited about the makeover of our Bentonville office and know that our clients and associates will be, too.”

The banking center consolidations will occur in mid-July and won’t result in any job cuts. Vaught said clients are not required to make any changes to their accounts or take any action unless notified otherwise.

“While this may seem like a reduction in our presence, we are fully committed to Northwest Arkansas. Our entire team will remain in place, and we are actively hiring new talent to serve our growing client base.”

Despite the consolidation of some banking centers, Vaught said the company continues to look for opportunities to open new offices when and where it makes business sense in Northwest Arkansas and across the franchise.

First Horizon is one of the largest banks in the southeast, with total assets of $87.1 billion as of March 31. That’s nearly double the level from the same date in 2020.

In a news release Thursday (June 10), Haag Brown said it will redevelop the entire building. First Horizon will anchor the building. The property’s remaining 13,000 square feet will be available for lease in the coming months.

“We are always looking to acquire great real estate in which we believe we can add value,” Haag Brown principal Greg Haag said. “This is one of those rare opportunities where you get to start a project with a high-quality partner, such as First Horizon Bank.  We are especially excited about this first project with them and the transformation of this iconic location.”

“We are thankful for the opportunity to invest in one of the hottest markets in the country,” Joshua Brown said. “As developers, we are drawn to retail locations and the location of this real estate is irreplaceable. We have a 20,000-square-foot building on nearly 3 acres of land and two hard corners with traffic signals to access the site.”