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St. LOUIS – If you’re not on the board or one of the leaders of the seven corporate credit unions included in a Midwest regional corporate proposal from Missouri Corporate President/CEO Dennis DeGroodt then don’t expect to see or hear any updates on the issue. DeGroodt said confidentiality is now in play and that the corporates want to keep the progress under wraps. “I want to respect that,” said DeGroodt. While the process is going quiet, it was anything but a few weeks ago when it started up. DeGroodt came out with guns blazing when the concept was first announced, sending letters to not only the CEOs of six corporates – Kansas Corporate CU, Nebraska Corporate Central FCU, Iowa League Corporate Central CU, Minnesota Corporate FCU, Midwest Corporate FCU, and Treasure State Corporate CU – but also to the CEOs of all Nebraska CUs. The letter to the corporate leaders outlined the concept and urged them to consider attending a meeting on the issue in July or August to discuss it further. He is seeking to get three reps from each of the corporate’s – the CEO and two board members – to the meeting. What’s known so far is that Midwest Corporate FCU and Nebraska Corporate Central FCU have agreed to attend the meeting. Though DeGroodt said the corporates plan to keep the rest of the process quiet, he did say that these are definitely the only two that have signed on so far. The letter to the CEOs of Nebraska credit unions asked them to reconsider the planned merger of Nebraska Corporate Central FCU and SunCorp in light of this Midwest regional corporate concept. Nebraska Corporate President/CEO Mike Keim and the corporate’s board said while they plan to attend the meeting, they have no plans on backing out of the SunCorp merger. As reported in Credit Union Times, while some Nebraska CU leaders find the Midwest corporate proposal interesting, they don’t think it should derail the SunCorp merger deal. DeGroodt has said he and the Missouri Corporate board feel the Midwest regional corporate idea has merit because it would allow Midwest corporates to right their own ticket per se on how the corporate would be structured. A number of Midwest corporate CUs have been picked off by mergers over the years, including South Dakota Corporate, Oklahoma Corporate, and now Nebraska Corporate. DeGroodt believes the problem with this is these corporates could wind up having a very small voice in the merged corporate. Under the plan proposed by DeGroodt, all of the corporates involved would get guaranteed board representation. If the progress on the Midwest corporate goes underground, it wouldn’t be the first time in the Midwest. Last year five Midwest corporates – Iowa League Corporate, Nebraska Corporate Central, Minnesota Corporate, Midwest Corporate and Treasure State Corporate – commissioned a study by an outside firm to look into the plausibility of a Midwest regional corporate. According to Keim, the study indicated that it would be too expensive and take far too long to see any returns. However, the five corporates signed confidentiality agreements, so no one other than leaders of those corporates have seen it. Keim has said that if DeGroodt had seen that study he wouldn’t be proposing the idea, but DeGroodt and the CUs of the Midwest CUs that conducted that study were not privy to it because of the confidentiality agreement. Many credit unions Credit Union Times spoke with said they had no idea that such a study was even done. [email protected]

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