Center Bancorp, Inc. to Open Princeton, New Jersey Office

Center Bancorp, Inc. to Open Princeton, New Jersey Office

UNION, N.J., March 14, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Center Bancorp, Inc.
(Nasdaq:CNBC) (the "Corporation", or "Center"), parent company of Union Center
National Bank ("UCNB" or the "Bank"), today announced that Union Center
National Bank has filed an application with the Office of the Comptroller of
the Currency for approval to open a Private Banking and Loan Production office
in Princeton, New Jersey. The new Princeton banking center will be located at
344 Nassau Street.

"Having a physical presence in Princeton will enable us to better serve the
financial needs of our existing clients in the area and meet Center's
strategic plan to expand the reach of our branch network," explains Anthony C.
Weagley, President and Chief Executive Officer. "We look forward to opening
our first Office in Mercer County and expect this facility to be operational
by mid-year 2013," he added.

In addition to the Bank's wide range of consumer and business products and
services, our commercial lending and private banking officers will also be
featured in the new Princeton office.

"We are excited to have already been drawing business from the Princeton area,
and are confident that our presence and heightened visibility in that market
will enhance our business development efforts.  Our management team looks
forward to meeting more of our neighbors, civic leaders and local businesses,
and supporting the community in a variety of meaningful and lasting ways,"
added Mr. Weagley.

About Center Bancorp

Center Bancorp, Inc. is a bank holding company, which operates Union Center
National Bank, its main subsidiary. Chartered in 1923, Union Center National
Bank is one of the oldest national banks headquartered in the state of New
Jersey and now ranks as the third largest national bank headquartered in the
state.Union Center National Bank is currently the largest commercial bank
headquartered in Union County. Its primary market niche is its commercial
banking business. The Bank focuses its lending activities on commercial
lending to small and medium-sized businesses, real estate developers and high
net worth individuals.

The Bank, through its Private Banking and Wealth Management Division, which
includes its wholly-owned subsidiary, Center Financial Group LLC, provides
personalized wealth management and advisory services to high net worth
individuals and families. Our services include banking, liquidity management,
investment services, custody, tailored lending, wealth planning, trust and
fiduciary services, insurance, family wealth advisory services and
philanthropic advisory services.The Bank through a strategic partnership
between the Bank's Private Banking Division and Alexander, Troy & Company
("AT&CO."), Family Office Services, of Katonah, New York, provides customized
financial and administrative services to high-net worth individuals.

Center, through a strategic partnership with Compass Financial Management, LLC
and ING, offers pension/401(k) planning services.Compass is an Investment
Advisory Company with five decades of cumulative experience providing
investment services in a personal, professional and attentive manner.They
provide discretionary private investment management for individuals and
corporate accounts as well as 401(k) advisory services.

The Bank currently operates 15 banking locations in Union, Morris and Bergen
Counties in New Jersey. Banking centers are located in Union Township (5
locations), Berkeley Heights, Boonton/Mountain Lakes,Englewood, Madison,
Millburn/Vauxhall, Morristown, Oakland, Saddle River, Springfield, and Summit,
New Jersey. The Bank's primary market area is comprised of Union, Morris and
Bergen Counties, New Jersey.

For further information regarding Center Bancorp, Inc., please visit our
website at http://www.centerbancorp.com or call 800.862.3683. For information
regarding Union Center National Bank, please visit our website at
www.ucnb.com.

The Center Bancorp, Inc. logo is available at
http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=17314

The Union Center National Bank logo is available at
http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=17321

Forward-Looking Statements

All non-historical statements in this press release (including statements
regarding our expanding our presence in key markets, our potential to create
incremental shareholder value from our strategic growth, growth in earnings
performance, the amount of the Small Business Lending Fund dividend and margin
improvement, ) constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of
the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking
statements may use forward-looking terminology such as "expect," "look,"
"believe," "plan," "anticipate," "may," "will" or similar statements or
variations of such terms or otherwise express views concerning trends and the
future. Such forward-looking statements involve certain risks and
uncertainties. These include, but are not limited to, the direction of
interest rates, continued levels of loan quality and origination volume,
Center Bancorp's ability to integrate Saddle River Valley Bank's branches into
Center Bancorp's branch network, continued relationships with major customers
including sources for loans, as well as the effects of international,
national, regional and local economic conditions and legal and regulatory
barriers and structure, including those relating to economic recovery and the
deregulation of the financial services industry, and other risks cited in the
Corporation's most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and other reports filed
by the Corporation with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Actual results
may differ materially from such forward-looking statements. Center Bancorp,
Inc. assumes no obligation for updating any such forward-looking statement at
any time.

CONTACT: Investor Inquiries:
         Joseph D. Gangemi
         Senior Vice President,
         Investor Relations
         908.206.2863
        
         Media Inquiries:
         France Delle Donne
         Senior Vice President,
         Communications & PR
         908.206.2668

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