Name Change Slated for CUs Using "Deere"
WATERLOO, Iowa - There's a name change in the winds for John Deere Community Credit Union by the end of 2005. The move was sparked by a Deere & Company request that the $858 million credit change its name to avoid trademark confusion. Also impacted by the name change request are East Moline, Illinois-based Deere Harvester CU and Ottumwa, Iowa-based Deere Community Federated CU. Though the credit unions have always operated independently of Deere, the company asked for the change since use of the trademark name, in whole or in part, may imply incorrectly to some that the credit unions are directly affiliated with or a subsidiary of Deere & Company. All three credit unions have until the end of 2007 to complete the name change. The relationship with John Deere employees and their respective communities will continue uninterrupted with no change in the quality of service provided by the credit unions. "Deere & Company continues to value the great services provided by the credit union to employees and to others in the community, and Deere will work cooperatively with the credit unions to assure a smooth name transition," said Curtis G. Linke, vice president of corporate communications at Deere & Company. "I wish to emphasize that the credit unions have done nothing wrong to bring this about. On the contrary, the credit unions have grown and become even more valuable to its members over the years. Deere & Company recognizes this success and the quality of service, but simply needs to clarify the relationship with the company." According to Linke, only Moline, Illinois-based Deere & Company CU will be permitted to retain some reference to Deere, because it has not expanded its field of membership and is focused solely on John Deere employees.