Just days after announcing a major expansion in mortgage lending, Sun Bancorp (SNBC) in Vineland, N.J., said that it is beefing up its commercial lending team as well.

The $3.1 billion-asset parent of Sun National Bank announced Monday that it has opened a new commercial loan office in Plymouth Meeting, Pa., and has hired veteran commercial lender James Higgins to run it. Higgins had most recently managed the Greater Philadelphia commercial lending team at Susquehanna Bancshares (SUSQ) and had previously held leadership posts with other major banks in the region.

Thomas X. Geisel, the president and chief executive at Sun National Bank, said in a news release that establishing an office in the Philadelphia suburbs "enables Sun to expand our reach and more efficiently serve the metropolitan area."

Sun continues to bring in new talent despite reporting a higher-than-expected loss of $28.1 million in the first quarter. The bank said last week that it had more than doubled the size of its New Jersey residential lending team by hiring 50 former employees from MetLife's now-defunct mortgage origination unit.

In December, Sun said that it had hired two seasoned executives, including a former managing director at Susquehanna, to help grow its middle-market and commercial real estate loan portfolios.

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