Private Bancorp of America Inc., the La Jolla-based parent company of San Diego Private Bank, saw earnings rise 20 percent from a year ago in its first quarter ending March 31, reaching $1,346,000.

In a statement, officials said the company posted net interest income of more than $5.22 million, up from $4.63 million in the year-ago period. Total interest income topped $5.8 million, up from $5.11 million a year ago, reflecting growth in earning assets.

Total assets as of March 31 were $538 million, up 20 percent from the year-ago quarter. Net loans also increased 20 percent year over year, to $417 million; and deposits totaled $416 million, up 26 percent.

Officials said credit quality remained strong, and capital levels at the bank remained well above “well capitalized” levels.

The company in April announced the completion of a private placement of $17 million of its common stock at $21.75 per share, to certain institutional accredited investors and members of the bank’s board of directors. After expenses, the transaction resulted in approximately $16.3 million of net proceeds to the company.

During the first quarter, Private Bancorp of America (OTCQB: PBAM) received regulatory approvals to expand its business model to Beverly Hills, under the Los Angeles Private Bank flag.

Private Bancorp also has offices in San Diego, Coronado, La Jolla and Newport Beach., along with electronic banking offerings.