Acknowledging what it calls its trailblazer role in acquiring bank assets, $1 billion Royal Credit Union of Eau Claire, Wis. wasted little time in the purchase/conversion of 11 branches of an ailing Madison bank setting June 26-28 as the formal switchover.
In a statement, Royal CU President/CEO Charles Grossklaus said the purchase of the Wisconsin branches of AnchorBank, including loan and deposit portfolios, represents "the largest bank branch acquisition that our state and federal regulators have considered" making the CU "very proud to have received regulatory approval."
Led by the NCUA, three other regulatory agencies including the FDIC, Office of Thrift Supervision and the Wisconsin Office of Credit Unions gave final approval to the transaction, which was submitted last November.
"Yes, I have heard from some others around the country congratulating me after reading about it on your website but I can't say I know of anybody else who is doing the same," said Grossklaus responding to a question about whether the AnchorBank deal might set a new precedent.
Grossklaus said a management and employee team has been working since January training AnchorBank employees and distributing direct mail literature to the 20,000 AnchorBank customers to make them feel comfortable and secure about their accounts and the switchover.
Grossklaus said he and other key Royal executives have led a 100-member employee team to visit AnchorBank customers and civic leaders in the communities, many in rural areas of north central Wisconsin and near the Twin Cities, where AnchorBank has offices.
"I've been to nine of the 11 communities and spoken with AnchorBank customers as well as Chamber of Commerce and EDC officials," said Grossklaus, making reference to the Economic Development Corp., a statewide agency.