For Frank Berrish, president/CEO of the $2.6 billion Visions Federal Credit Union in Endicott, N.Y., the end of November is turning into a barn burner – $10 million in Black Friday loans and completion of two mergers on the same day.
“We are thrilled about the Black Friday loans, which in our book is phenomenal, and we might get couple million more today,” Berrish said of a Cyber Monday promotion.
Visions also plans to complete two mergers on the same day – Thursday – including the $52 million BCT FCU of Binghamton in a purchase/assumption transaction cleared just last Friday by NCUA.
The agency had conserved BCT in June after the CU experienced a fraud, Berrish said, noting the NCUA had apparently solicited bidders in a competitive auction “and we learned we were successful.”
Visions is also completing on Thursday its first major entry into northern New Jersey by consolidating the ailing $309 million Paragon FCU of Montvale. The merger deal was first announced last August.
“I realize and appreciate this will be a challenging week for my staff,” Berrish said.
As for Black Friday, Visions did a similar ad campaign a year ago and during that period brought in $14 million and “so we’re on track again,” he added.
Berrish said he has seen one local community bank “copy us on Black Friday loans” and meanwhile Visions “is offering a pretty good rate—1.79% for new and used vehicles.”
“Look, everybody is out shopping so why not take advantage and do some marketing,” he suggested.