Eastern Arkansas lender eyes Rogers location for NWA market entry

by Paul Gatling ([email protected]) 1,333 views 

Arkansas-based Armor Bank, a full-service community bank headquartered in Forrest City, plans to build a retail location in Northwest Arkansas.

The company has filed a preliminary development plan with the city of Rogers for technical review, signaling its intention to build a 5,419-square-foot building at 1100 S. 52nd St. in Rogers. The 1.62-acre lot is at the southwest corner of 52nd Street and Horsebarn Road, across the street from another banking office under construction for Missouri-based Sterling Bank.

According to Benton County real estate records, Armor Bank paid $2.25 million for the land in February. The purchase price equals $31.88 per square foot. Horse Barn Partners LLC, managed by Ivan Crossland Jr., was the seller.

Armor Bank filed its planning document on April 8. According to the filing, Roark Perkins Perry Yelvington Architects of Little Rock and Rogers engineer Crafton Tull lead the initial design work. After any comments or revisions to the plan, it will go before the city’s planning commission later.

Armor Bank is a subsidiary of Big Creek Bancshares. On Dec. 31, 2016, the holding company acquired Forrest City Financial Corp., the holding company of Forrest City Bank, which was started in 1919 as Forrest City Savings and Loan. The family ownership group for Big Creek is led by east Arkansas businessman Mark Waldrip of Moro and his son Nathan Waldrip of Jonesboro.

In March of 2017, Forrest City Bank officially changed its name to Armor Bank.

As of Dec. 31, 2021, Armor Bank had $349 million in assets, up 68.3% year-over-year, and $313.9 million in deposits, an annual increase of 78.8%. It has 10 full-service retail locations in Arkansas including offices in Little Rock and Hot Springs.

According to the FDIC, there are 22 lenders doing business in Rogers and 27 in Benton County.