Exciting Merger News

 

DEAR VALUED MEMBER,

We are thrilled to announce Regulatory Approval of the potential merger of Western Districts Members Credit Union (WDMCU) into West Michigan Credit Union (WMCU), contingent upon a positive WDMCU membership vote. The prospective partnership was proposed by both Board of Directors and Chief Executive Officers, of the individual credit unions, to improve the collective memberships’ financial futures.

OUR WHY:

While WDMCU has been self-sustainable during the recent pandemic, merging with WMCU will create additional benefits to both credit union memberships. In addition to a significant growth of more than 17,000 memberships, the combined organization stands to create an asset size of more than $265 Million.

HOW WE ALL BENEFIT:

This partnership will provide five (5) additional locations for WDMCU members across West Michigan as well as additional ATM locations across several states. West Michigan Credit Union will be expanding its presence in Grand Rapids with two (2) additional locations and its field of membership to encompass Allegan, Barry, Benzie, Clare, Calhoun, Eaton, Grand Traverse, Ionia, Isabella, Jackson, Kalamazoo, Kalkaska, Mason, Muskegon, Oceana, and Ottawa in addition to the counties it already serves. In addition to added convenience, Western Districts Members Credit Union believes that the partnership will provide for a better member experience. With a larger membership size, we expect to be able to cater to a wider range of improved products/services and technology solutions. Throughout the proceedings to solidify our partnership, we will continue to look for additional opportunities to provide better services to our members.

WHAT TO EXPECT:

All WDMCU branches will remain open for operation with branding updates to match WMCU. In addition to the existing WDMCU branches, members will now have the added convenience of five (5) additional branch locations. No employee from either Western Districts Members Credit Union or West Michigan Credit Union will be terminated or laid-off as a result of the merger. All accounts will transfer to West Michigan Credit Union upon the completion of the merger. Our anticipated merger date is April 1, 2022.

WHAT ARE THE NEXT STEPS:

A merger packet and ballot will be mailed to all members in good standing.  A special meeting of the WDMCU membership will be called to vote on the merger plan and tally the ballots that were mailed in or dropped-off. We will seek an affirmative membership vote from you, the members of Western Districts Members Credit Union, before moving forward with the merger. The date for a membership vote has not yet been determined, but we will keep you informed when that date is finalized.

We value you as our member and are committed to keeping you up-to-date on the progression of the partnership as it continues to develop. The latest updates will be posted here on our website – or available at any branch. Rest assured, you will receive the same exceptional service from the same great team members you will come to know from West Michigan Credit Union pending an affirmative vote from you, our member.

Sincerely,

David Keim, President/CEO
David Zawacki, WDMCU Board Chairman

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:

  • What has been proposed to take place between Western Districts Members Credit Union and West Michigan Credit Union?
    • After considerable negotiations, the Board of Directors of Western Districts Members Credit Union and of West Michigan Credit Union have decided that a partnership between the two institutions would result in an increase of benefits to the combined memberships. The merger of these two credit unions will allow for an expansion of branch locations, lower competitive rates, new digital solutions, and a greater commitment to the member experience. To achieve a successful merger, an affirmative vote must be given by the WDMCU membership.
  • Is either credit union in financial trouble?
    • No, both credit unions continue to grow and be successful independently. The Board of Directors of both credit unions agree that there are significant benefits to both memberships when forming a deliberate partnership.
  • Will my accounts continue to be insured?
    • Yes, your accounts will continue to remain well protected and insured. Your deposits are federally insured through the National Credit Union Administration, for up to $250,000 and backed by the full faith and credit of the United States Government.
  • Will my branch remain open?
    • Yes, West Michigan Credit Union plans to keep all WDMCU branches open. Once the merger has been completed, members will have access to a total of seven (7) branch locations and a fee-free ATM network in West Michigan and several states.
  • Why have the two credit unions proposed a merger?
    • The merger of the credit unions will promote a steady development of products and services that will be available to our members. While looking to the future, both organizations have expressed wanting to emphasize the member experience through competitive rates and new digital solutions. The integration of WDMCU into WMCU allows for a blend of experience, talent, and resources; resulting in the resounding mission of working together as the most trusted resource to help our members’ financial lives be simply better.
  • How would Western Districts Members Credit Union and West Michigan Credit Union members benefit from the proposed merger?
    • The merger will provide members with an expanded network of branches. Members will have access to three (3) branches in Grand Rapids, as well as branches in Big Rapids, Reed City, Cadillac, and Manistee, Michigan. The merger will provide the ability for further investment in digital solutions not previously offered. West Michigan Credit Union is committed to continuously offering an emphasis on building lasting relationships and exceeding member expectations.
  • How would member accounts be impacted?
    • Prior to the completion of the merger, members of each credit union will experience no changes to their accounts, account numbers, or service standards. Once the merger is successfully approved by our members, West Michigan Credit Union will work to ensure a seamless conversion of accounts and account numbers from one processing system to the other. The timeline and conversion of account information will not occur until late Spring of 2022 – with an expected merger date of April 1, 2022. We will provide additional information regarding this process once the merger is approved.
  • Would any staff be laid off as a result of this merger?
    • No team member from either Western Districts Members Credit Union or West Michigan Credit Union will be terminated or laid off as a result of the merger. In fact, the merger will promote greater employee career growth opportunities, training resources, and competitive employee benefits.
  • What would happen to the Board of Directors?
    • The organization would have a Board of Directors composed of two (2) members from WDMCU’s existing Board and seven (7) members from WMCU’s existing Board to ensure that the combined organization would have representation from both credit unions to speak on behalf of the combined membership.
  • Would the merger affect membership eligibility?
    • There will be no effect on membership eligibility for current members of each credit union. As a result of the merger, West Michigan Credit Union’s field of membership will encompass Allegan, Barry, Benzie, Clare, Calhoun, Eaton, Grand Traverse, Ionia, Isabella, Jackson, Kalamazoo, Kalkaska, Mason, Muskegon, Oceana, and Ottawa in addition to the counties it already serves.
  • What is the proposed merger process and timeline?
    • We, WDMCU, must conduct a vote of membership approval to continue the merger process. A majority membership vote is required for merger approval. WMCU anticipates the merger to be completed on April 1, 2022 with conversion of accounts and account numbers from one processing system to the other to be completed by late Spring of 2022.
  • Do both credit unions support this partnership?
    • Entirely! Both Boards are enthusiastic and passionate about the opportunities that this partnership will provide to our members and local communities!
  • Would the credit union be financially sound?
    • Yes! Individually, both credit unions are financially stable and excited with the prospect of growth that the merger would create. West Michigan Credit Union is proud to continue offering full-service products and services to all members of the combined organization.
  • What if I have additional questions?
    • We are here to answer them! If you have any questions about this proposed merger and how it could impact you, please visit a branch location, call the credit union, or visit the credit unions’ websites, www.wdmcu.org and www.WestMichiganCU.com.