Exhibit 99.1


Cornerstone Bancshares, Inc. Reports Positive Earnings for Fourth Quarter of 2014


CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. – January 27, 2015 -- (PR Newswire) Cornerstone Bancshares, Inc. (“Cornerstone”; OTC Bulletin Board: CSBQ; CSBQP), holding company of Cornerstone Community Bank (“Bank”), today announced net income of $412,000 for the fourth quarter of 2014, which represents a 2.1 percent increase in net income compared with the same quarter of 2013. This also marks the sixteenth consecutive quarter of positive earnings for Cornerstone.


Net income for the year as of December 31, 2014 was $1,638,000, which represents a 2.5 percent decrease from 2013. Other financial highlights year-over-year include:


·2% increase in loans

·12.9% increase in loan-to-deposit ratio

·38.1% reduction in net foreclosed assets

·9.6% increase in Tier 1 leverage ratio

·19.7% decrease in nonaccrual loans

·16% decrease in core transactional deposits


“The Board is extremely pleased with this solid performance for the year,” said Cornerstone’s Chairman Welborn. “Our focus for the new year will be on steady loan and deposit growth, increased earnings, and positioning Cornerstone favorably for our upcoming merger.”


On December 8, 2014, Cornerstone announced the signing of a definitive agreement to merge holding companies with SmartFinancial, Inc., parent company of SmartBank, which has seven branch locations throughout East Tennessee and the Florida Panhandle. When completed, the merger will create a nearly $1 billion banking entity under the name SmartFinancial, Inc., for which Welborn will serve as Chairman of a combined Board of Directors.


“We are excited for the future and the opportunities that this new partnership holds,” said Welborn. “It will give us the size and scale to compete in this new banking environment, an expanded footprint for greater growth potential, and the ability to deliver the greatest value for all of our shareholders. Pardon the pun, but it’s just a ‘smart’ move.”


Founded in 1996, Cornerstone is a single-bank holding company, with $416 million in assets, serving the Chattanooga, Tennessee MSA, with five full-service branch locations throughout Chattanooga. Locally owned and operated, Cornerstone specializes in providing a comprehensive range of customized financial solutions for businesses and individuals.


Important Information for Shareholders 


This communication shall not constitute an offer to sell, the solicitation of an offer to sell, or the solicitation of an offer to buy any securities or the solicitation of any vote or approval, nor shall there be any sale of securities in any jurisdiction in which such offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful prior to registration or qualification under the securities laws of any such jurisdiction. In connection with the proposed Merger, Cornerstone will file a registration statement on Form S-4 with the SEC, which will contain the joint proxy statement/prospectus of SmartFinancial and Cornerstone. Shareholders of Cornerstone and SmartFinancial are encouraged to read the registration statement, including the joint proxy statement/prospectus that will be part of the registration statement, because it will contain important information about the Merger, Cornerstone and SmartFinancial. After the registration statement is filed with the SEC, the joint proxy statement/prospectus and other relevant documents will be mailed to all Cornerstone and SmartFinancial shareholders and will be available for free on the SEC’s website (www.sec.gov). The joint proxy statement/prospectus will also be made available for free by contacting the President and CEO of SmartFinancial at (865) 868-0613 or the President and CEO of Cornerstone at 423-385-3009. No offer of securities shall be made except by means of a prospectus meeting the requirements of Section 10 of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended.


The following information was filed by Smartfinancial Inc. (SMBK) on Tuesday, January 27, 2015 as an 8K 2.02 statement, which is an earnings press release pertaining to results of operations and financial condition. It may be helpful to assess the quality of management by comparing the information in the press release to the information in the accompanying 10-K Annual Report statement of earnings and operation as management may choose to highlight particular information in the press release.

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