Affinity in Michigan Merges St. Cletus

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By Jim Rubenstein

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The $143 million Affinity Group Credit Union of Pontiac, Mich.,is consolidating the $15 million St. Cletus Credit Union of Warren,Mich.

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The merger was approved by St. Cletus members June 18 andconversion is expected by Sept. 30, Affinity Group CU said.

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Affinity Group officials said like other small credit unions,St. Cletus found the marketplace tough competition. Mergerdiscussions began a year ago.

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“It was actually one of our employees dealing with one of theirscoming to one of our training seminars that started it all,” saidCarma Peters, chief operating officer at the suburban Detroitcredit union.

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St. Cletus, with a community charter but a church parish assponsor, has 1,600 members.

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Peters said the St. Cletus office will retain its name under themerger under the “as a part of” Affinity brand.

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The Warren credit union will also retain representation on theAffinity Group board, said Peters. St, Cletus will be thefirst Affinity Group branch in Macomb County. Affinity has FOMcovering Wayne, Oakland, Macomb, Monroe and Livingstoncounties.

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Affinity Group, said Peters, is currently having talks with atleast two other Michigan credit unions “but we are not in aposition to discuss that,”

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In a formal statement, Peters, said, however, Affinity Group is“always open to begin a conversation with credit unions todetermine if a partnership is in the best interest of bothorganizations.”

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The 20,500-member Affinity Group said it has merged five othercredit unions in recent years.

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