The $780 million Metro Credit Union of Chelsea, Mass., embarking on a planned merger that was announced this week of the $58 million University CU of Boston, said it is marking a new expansion chapter in SEG growth.
“Let me stress that the decision by the University Credit Union board to seek us as a merger partner is being effected strictly to help the member,” declared Robert Cashman, president/CEO of Metro, which lays claim to one of the largest SEG networks in the state with more than 1,800 at numerous hospitals and universities.
The merger of University CU with 8,000 members would give Metro two new branches in the South and Back Bay areas of Boston and provide access to Boston University students as well as collegians at Tufts and Berkeley College of Music, among others in metro Boston.
“This is a strategically important and fantastic move for us since we are also in the process of opening our own new 14,000-square-foot building in Boston in addition to the two University branches, one of which is being relocated,” said Cashman, noting the branch openings are scheduled in May.
The University CU merger, he said, would be the first since 2009 and largest in years. Its last merger was with the $20 million Boston Globe CU. “We remain open to other mergers” depending on the fit, said Cashman. Metro, with 120,000 members, has 10 Massachusetts branches.
In a letter to its members, William Sinabaldi, president/CEO of University, said the decision to merge was tied to “recent market forces and regulatory changes that have impacted the financial services industry,” and was pursued “after considering several alternatives” which were not spelled out. The CU, which has been operating at 7.4 % net worth, managed to eke out a small profit for 2010 after losing $237,000 in 2009.