Cadence Bancorp in Houston is planning to raise as much as $181 million through an initial public offering.

The $9.5 billion-asset Cadence, formed in 2009 to buy struggling banks in the wake of the financial crisis, filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission to sell at least 7.5 million shares of common stock at $19 to $21 each. The offering could approach 8.7 million shares if there is additional demand.

Cadence said it primarily plans to use net proceeds to fund organic growth. The company said in its filing that it has been adding loans at a 16.8% compound annual rate since 2012. At Dec. 31 Cadence had $7.4 billion in loans and $8 billion of deposits.

Acquisitions are also possible, though Cadence said it had “no current plans or arrangements” to buy other banks. Its last deal, for the $1.6 billion-asset Encore Bank in Houston, closed in July 2012.

Paul Murphy, CEO of Cadence Bancorp
Cadence Bancorp, led by CEO Paul Murphy, could raise more than $180 million from its planned initial public offering.

After the offering, outside investors will own about 9% of Cadence’s shares. The private investors who helped form the company with a $1 billion investment in 2010 will continue to hold a controlling stake.

Cadence raised $245 million in July 2014 through an oversubscribed debt offering.

Cadence has 65 branches in Alabama, Mississippi, Florida, Tennessee and Texas. Its primary line of business is commercial lending to middle-market companies, which it defines as firms with annual revenues of $10 million to $500 million. At Dec. 31 commercial loans made up roughly 77% of its loan portfolio.

Paul Murphy, the company’s chairman and CEO, previously served as CEO at Amegy Bank of Texas. Amegy is now owned by Zions Bancorp. in Salt Lake City.

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