Savings & Loans’ merger with Australian Central Credit Union was approved by our members at our Annual General Meeting this afternoon, marking the beginning of a new chapter for Savings & Loans.
Staff at both credit unions are working hard at the moment to finalise the legal merger, which will occur next Tuesday, 1 December. From Tuesday, all current Savings & Loans members will become members of Australian Central and their share will be transferred automatically. The new credit union will eventually have a new name, but will initially operate under the Savings & Loans and Australian Central brands.
So what differences will you see now that the merger has been approved? In the short term, very little will change. Members will continue to access their accounts the same way and all passwords and PINs will remain the same. There are some immediate benefits we will be passing on to members, for example small reductions in the fees associated with our Retirement & Pension account as well as a higher interest rate to align it with Australian Central’s Club 55 Account.
While we’ve merged in a legal sense, it will be some months until Australian Central and Savings & Loans members will be able to use the other credit union’s branches, as we operate on different computer systems.
Looking a littler further ahead, work will soon get underway on developing a name, brand and identity for the new credit union.
There are a host of other decisions to be made over the next few months, including which products the new credit union will offer, which building will house the head office and what the growth strategy will be going forward. These are all important decisions that will take some time to finalise.
As soon as decisions are made, we’ll let you know what they are and what they mean for you. You’ll be given plenty of notice about any changes to your accounts and members’ interests will always be the most important factor in any decision.
This is a bittersweet moment for me, as I will not be going forward with the new credit union. After nine years at Savings & Loans I know that our staff are committed to serving their members and that this will continue with the new credit union.
Peter Evers, current Managing Director of Australian Central, will lead the new credit union. Having known Peter for many years, I know he is committed to the principles of mutuality and returning value to members. Under his leadership your credit union will continue to thrive well into the future.
The new credit union will continue to provide you, and hundreds of thousands of other Australians, with a competitive alternative to the big banks.