STATESBORO — AgSouth Farm Credit CEO Bill Spigener recently announced that the customer-owned cooperative returned more than $13.4 million in allocated surplus revolvements to its customers for the year ending Dec. 31, 2003. Earlier this year the association returned $28 million in patronage to members who did business with the cooperative in 2008.
Additionally, AgSouth Farm Credit had net earnings of $7.9 million during the first quarter of 2009. The figure is down from first quarter 2008 earnings of $9.9 million.
“While earnings are down, the association has taken proactive measures to generate additional income and reduce expenses for the remainder of 2009,” Spigener said. “Earnings are on track to meet the final 2008 earnings of $33.8 million. AgSouth’s directors and employees remaining focused on lending that meets our underwriting guidelines, despite the instability of the financial market and the slow down of the economy that has affected other financial institutions.”
Added CFO Alisa D. Gunter, “AgSouth is committed to cooperative principles and strives to return the allocated surplus portion of its patronage payments to members on a five-year turnaround. The fact that we’re able to do that in these uncertain economic times is a testament to the strength of our association and its members.”
As a coooperative, AgSouth provides patronage refunds, a form of profit sharing, to its member-borrowers. Since 1991, the association has returned more than $233 million in cash to its borrowers.
As of March 31, AgSouth had more than 6,800 members; $1.5 billion in assets; and $228 million in capital and allocated accounts.
AgSouth provides loans for agriculture and agriculture-related businesses, equipment, vehicles and facilities. The association also makes secondary home loans for rural home purchases, construction and refinancing.
AgSouth Farm Credit is one of the largest lending cooperatives in the Southeast. The cooperative is headquartered in Statesboro with administrative offices in Spartanburg, S.C., and Orangeburg, S.C.; and branches serving 59 Georgia and 34 South Carolina counties. For more information, visit http://www.agsouthfc.com.