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DALLAS – TNB Card Services, the card management arm of credit union-owned Town North Bank, has reached a milestone. More than 60 credit unions have sold their credit card portfolios to TNB since it began purchasing the assets in late 2002, the firm has announced. TNB passed the milestone with the purchase of card portfolios from three credit unions from Arizona and one from Missouri. The three Arizona credit unions are the $46 million Banner FCU, headquartered in Phoenix (1,000 card accounts, $1.1. million as of NCUA’s end of year data); the $46 million First Edition Community Credit Union, also of Phoenix, (2,200 accounts, $3.6 million); and the $51 million Desert Energy Credit Union, headquartered in Tucson (850 accounts, $1 million). The one Missouri credit union, the $17 million City Credit Union, headquartered in Independence, Missouri, brought 527 accounts worth $527,000. Asset Exchange, the independent credit card broker headquartered in Portland, Oregon, handled the transactions, the firm said. In a very highly competitive market for credit union card portfolios, TNB has carved itself a niche among credit unions which have been concerned about selling their card portfolios to a credit union-owned firm – and the firm has also carved itself a niche by buying card portfolios that sometimes have been smaller than the other card portfolio purchasers usually want. “The credit unions involved in our latest portfolio acquisitions, like so many others before them, are choosing TNB as their buyer for several very good reasons,” said Rollie Penn, executive vice president of TNB Card Services. “The fact we are owned and directed by credit unions is a major factor, as well as the fair prices we offer, our strong reputation as a partner, and our marketing programs that not only build the portfolios but promote the credit unions as well.” The CEOs of the most recent credit union sellers echo Penn’s sentiments. Linda Dhaemers, CEO of Desert Energy, said that her credit union had surveyed its 7,200 members about what they wanted in a credit card and when the members indicated that interest rates and fees were their biggest issues, the credit union began to look closely at TNB. But the fact that TNB is owned by credit unions helped clinch it, she said. “We also liked the fact that TNB is credit union-owned,” Dhaemers said. “Now we are definitely going to have a better product for our members. They will have choices in cards at a good interest rate, and we will be able to offer Platinum, Family Account, and Business cards. At our size, for us to maintain on our own half a dozen different cards just wouldn’t have been feasible.” -

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