The new Northwest Credit Union Association, combining the Oregon and Washington leagues, is ready to roll Jan. 1. The merger won formal board and member approval Wednesday as forecasts were made of more state trade association combinations to come during 2011.
"I am not at liberty to discuss where and when but you will see this new multi-state business model being repeated elsewhere next year," predicted Washington CU League President/CEO John Annaloro, architect and CEO of the new group. Oregon CU League President/CEO Troy Stang will serve as president of the new group.
The launch of Northwest follows days after the disclosure that the Arizona Credit Union League and the Credit Union Associations of Colorado/Wyoming are plotting a merger to become effective by midyear once approved by its members.
The state league merger trend, marked earlier this year by the formal debut of the League of Southeastern Credit Unions (Florida/Alabama) is bound to increase next year, forecast Annaloro citing the need to eliminate duplicate services and to focus on the key job of government relations.
Though all of the trade groups involved in the negotiations are financially healthy, their dues base continues to erode even as the assets of CUs grow, said Annaloro. A merger with another league, even if not bordering states, can produce benefits, Northwest officials said.
It was unclear where the next multi-state combinations might occur but sources have suggested the South or Southeast might be the next potential area. The Arizona/Colorado/Wyoming group said in the future it might explore a Mountain States configuration of other leagues.