The $302 million El Paso Employees Federal Credit Union becomes Evolve Credit Union on Jan. 1. But the process of getting there seemed to take eons to some.
The credit union’s board and staff began talking name change in 1997 after it was granted a community charter, and an Atlanta marketing firm helped come up with the “Evolve” moniker.
But still, final approval was slow in coming. Perhaps painfully slow.
“We simply decided that we had been dithering around long enough and needed to make a decision,” said Kenneth Walters, president/CEO.
He said the “Evolve” name speaks to the changes in financial services the credit union can now offer, including a range of electronic banking products.
In a fact sheet posted on its website this week, the CU explained that it was timing the name switch to the CU’s 75th anniversary celebration and that the “Evolve” brand best “describes the direction of our changing financial institution.”
The website also noted that “Evolve” was chosen “after numerous months of research” involving focus groups made of members of the CU and community and the staff.
Walters said there was at times “a stubbornness” in giving up the existing name “but we knew it had to be done” in light of confusion on who could belong once the charter was opened beyond just El Paso city workers.
“Evolve was chosen,” the website said, because the old name tended to “mislead members of our community.”
The Atlanta firm, Adrenaline Inc., first came with up with “Evolution” but “we decided that needed to be shortened and that way we could tie in our online products, and our plan is to use all lower case” as in e-mail and e-commerce, said Walters.
The “Evolve” brand should be helpful in the CU’s plan to expand beyond El Paso County.
A CU marketing spokeswoman noted that the Texas CU might seek to eventually branch into nearby Las Cruces, N.M. The CU currently has eight El Paso branches but has sold off the property on a west side facility because of low traffic and expects to close it sometime next year, the spokeswoman said.