Louisiana CU Eyes Re-Vote on Merger Proposal
Even as a management shakeup is under way, a Louisiana credit union which last month saw its members defeat a planned in-state merger is now looking toward a year-end re-vote.
The prospect of the $96 million Main Street Financial FCU of Baton Rouge asking its members to reconsider for the second time a merger bid by the $260 million Jefferson Financial CU of Metairie was put forward Monday by the president/CEO of Jefferson in suburban New Orleans, Mark Rosa.
“We are hopeful there will be less confusion now and that the unfounded rumors have been put to rest about branch closings,” said Rosa, in expressing confidence the 15,300 members will have a better understanding of the benefits of consolidation.
The merger proposal was defeated by more than 1,000 votes Jan. 17 but officials of both CUs contend attitudes have taken a u-turn and many members now favor a consolidation. Rosa said a re-vote could come in the fourth quarter this year or in the first quarter of 2013.
The matter must still win approval by the NCUA, which has given the Baton Rouge CU the green light to resume the merger discussions once again, said a Main Street spokeswoman.
Meanwhile, Main Street Financial has lost its acting CEO, Pat Duhe, who had taken the interim job less than two months ago, replacing the retired Cary Anderson.
The new interim CEO picked two weeks ago is Diane McDuff, senior vice president of relationship management, who has been with the CU 15 years. Meanwhile, Misty Albrecht, vice president of brand initiatives growth, said she is resigning effective Feb. 13.
Regarding the planned revote, Rosa said his CU, Jefferson Financial, is required by law to begin the entire merger process “from scratch” including repeating due diligence and accounting work. In essence, the first campaign “was a trial run and amounted to wasted money” but that has not discouraged both boards from repeating the process, Rosa said.
“Our board is not wavering,” said Rosa expressing confidence the recast merger bid will be supported by both CUs.