Ohio CUs to Merge in Wake of Retirement, Third Partner Planned
In a deal recognizing the legacy of a retired Columbus, Ohio, credit union leader, Tom Furrey, a trio of state CUs is developing a merger pact described as “strategic in nature.”
All of the details on a management agreement and the planned merger of the $65 million Western CU of Columbus into the $60 million Powerco CU, also of Columbus are to be spelled out in the coming week, officials said.
“The identity of the third credit union will be made known shortly,” promised Michael Shafer, president of Powerco, who declined for the moment to elaborate on what he called an “unusual” consolidation.
Both Western and Powerco are “financially healthy” he said noting negotiations on that merger have been under way for more than a year.
For the interim until the proposed merger is implemented, Shafer has agreed to serve as president/CEO of Western following the Dec. 31 retirement of Tom Furrey, currently chairman of the Ohio Credit Union League’s foundation and a long-time league director.
Furrey and Shafer have known each other for years swapping jobs. Furrey was CEO at Powerco for 11 years, from 1981 to 1992, and Shafer worked at Western for 10 years from 1989 to 1999. Furrey headed Western CU for the past 20 years and has played an industry role for 38 years.
“Synergy between the two individuals and the two credit unions is quite unique,” said a press statement. Western has branches in Columbus, Delaware and Plain City. Powerco has one office.
Shafer has been CEO of Powerco for the past 12 years. Furrey will serve as a consultant to Western “during the next year in areas that are strategic in nature,” the statement said.