Central Corporate CU CEO Bill Walby said he’s optimistic his members will vote to approve a merger with the $1.4 billion Alloya Corporate FCU.
The NCUA approved the merger request Thursday, allowing the two to clear one more hurdle along the way to forming the industry’s second largest corporate.
Most of the $1.37 billion CenCorp’s 330 members will vote by mail, Walby said, but others will travel to the corporate’s Southfield, Mich., headquarters April 4 for a special meeting to cast their votes in person.
Voting packets went out to members Thursday afternoon, and Walby said he expects those voting by mail to return their ballots by April 4 so by the end of the meeting, a final tally can be announced.
The combined entity would maintain CenCorp’s suburban Detroit office, a strategy Walby said has helped members warm to the merger proposition.
“As we’ve gone through the state and made commitments to members, we’ve assured them that their field reps, or those people they talk to on a daily basis on the phone, will still be there,” he said.
Another aspect of the secession plan appealing to CenCorp members is that Walby will replace current Alloya CEO Chuck Furbee and run the merged institution. Furbee, who the NCUA convinced to come out of retirement to run Members United Bridge Corporate upon conservatorship, will return to retirement.
Walby confirmed Furbee’s letter to members that said the merger could be legally effective as early as the end of April. However, he added that July 1 is the consolidation’s “big target date”, when several member-facing systems will combine.
The operations teams at both corporates have been developing conversion plans since the merger was first proposed nearly a year ago.
Alloya in Warrenville, Ill., has 1,281 members.