Ontario Credit Unions announce plan to join forces.

 For immediate release

VAUGHAN (April 17, 2012) – The Board of Directors from McMaster, ETCU Financial, Peoples and PACE Credit Unions announced today their intent to amalgamate. Upon completion the amalgamated Credit Union will serve some 40,000 members through 17 locations and have combined assets of close to $700 million plus capital of approximately $50 million. The Credit Union will operate under the PACE brand with sub-branding used to identify certain branch locations according to their original bonds of association.

“The financial strength of PACE combined with the expanded range of financial products and services will certainly be of benefit to our loyal membership. This is very exciting for our members and staff” said McMaster CEO Peter DeRosa.”

Bob Lockwood, CEO of ETCU Financial Credit Union, commented “Working with PACE makes so much sense for us given that ETCU and PACE do so much with the Toronto District School Board already. Our presence together will be an advantage for both membership groups”

Heather MacDonald, CEO of Peoples Credit Union, believes that the ability to compete more effectively in an increasingly challenging marketplace will be a key outcome of the proposed merger. “We’re excited for the opportunity to merge with a like-minded credit union having strong community roots; one that is also committed to providing personalized financial products and expertise delivered by a strong employee team and efficient technology. Our Credit Unions have a history of success, many years of conservative growth and profitable operations. We believe that now is the appropriate time to consider this undertaking. “

Larry Smith, PACE President and CEO adds “The merger of four great credit unions will give the combined Credit Union the scale, resources and efficiencies it needs to provide new products and improved member services and state of the art delivery channels. We will continue to stay close to our core values, our commitment to cooperative principles, to the communities we serve and to our employees who will benefit from additional opportunities for career advancement.”

The proposed agreements will be presented to the Credit Union memberships for approval later this year.

For more information contact: Dan Coldwell                                                                           Vice President Business Development                                                                                PACE Credit Union                                                                                                                       905-738-8900                                                                                                    dcoldwell@pacecu.com

About McMaster Savings and Credit Union – based in Hamilton, McMaster predominantly serves the McMaster University community through 2 locations with 13 full and part time staff. They have 3,500 members and $30 million in assets. 

For more information contact: Peter DeRosa                                                                     CEO                                                                                                                                  McMaster Savings and Credit Union Limited                                                 pderosa@maccu.com                                                                                                              905-522-2903

About ETCU Financial Credit Union – based in Etobicoke, ETCU serve employees of the Toronto District School Board through their 1 location with 5 full time staff. They have 2,350 members and $57 million in assets.

For more information contact: Bob Lockwood                                                                     CEO                                                                                                                                      ETCU Financial Limited                                                                                            bob@etcu.com                                                                                                                           416-622-8500

About Peoples Credit Union – their Head Office is located in Innisfil, they serve the greater Barrie, Innisfil and Shelburne areas with 4 branches employing 51 full and part time staff. They have 8,700 members and $150 million in assets.

For more information contact: Heather MacDonald                                                            CEO                                                                                                                                    Peoples Credit Union Limited                                                                hmacdonald@peoplescu.ca                                                                                                     705-436-2044

About PACE Savings and Credit Union Limited – their Head Office is located in Vaughan, they serve 24,000 members through locations in Toronto, Hamilton, Mississauga, Markham, Aurora, Stouffville and Uxbridge. PACE employs 90 full and part time staff and have assets of $460 million.

Member Testimonial

Name:  Peter Atkinson

Member Since:  2004

Profile:  Peter is an accomplished entrepreneur; president of both Atkinson Irrigation and Batteaux Creek Golf Club.  Atkinson Irrigation has worked with some of the most prestigious Golf and Country Clubs in Ontario like Angus Glen Golf Club, St. Georges Golf & Country, and Toronto Golf Club.   Atkinson Irrigation has been providing quality installations and services to the Canadian Golf Industry since 1993.  They pride themselves on the vast array of services they provide from irrigation to fusion services.  Batteaux Creek Golf Club opened in 2002 and has been owned and operated since its inception by the Atkinson family. The course has grown and matured over the last ten years and will be celebrating its 10th Anniversary in the 2012 season.  The Club has been recognized by Golf Digest Magazine as a “Best Places to Play” in 2008/2009. Batteaux Creek maintains close ties to the community with numerous charitable donations to various fundraising groups like ‘Breaking Down Barriers’.

        www.batteauxcreek.com  –  www.atkinsonirrigation.com

Personal:  Peter is married with two children.  He and his wife are not only partners in life but also in business as they jointly own Batteaux Creek Golf Club.  Peter and his sons are avid golfers and play as often as they can.  In the off season, Peter can be found coaching his sons Hockey team and preparing his course for the upcoming golf season.

The PACE difference:    In 2004 Peter decided to make PACE Credit Union his primary financial institution for his business.  He created a long term partnership with PACE over the years which has supported him to expand and improve his business.   Peter is impressed with the attention he receives as a PACE member.   “I truly consider PACE to be a partner in my business.  There is always someone completely familiar with my situation available to assist, plus key decision makers are very accessible.  I feel like I have a responsive ally with me which gives me the confidence to grow my business.  You just don’t have this type of relationship at a Bank.”  – Peter Atkinson

From the Desk of Your CEO

On the world stage, Canada appears to be ahead of most other countries when it comes to having its fiscal house in order. Although we have not yet had to face the severe measures such as those in Europe, we must acknowledge that our own economy is not without its weaknesses. We see Ontario’s rising public debt and government-proposed cutbacks across the country. It is a time to be thoughtful about how we spend our hard-earned dollars and what action we are taking to reduce debt and get our finances in order. 

It’s important to think globally and act locally. What does that mean? It means to consider the bigger picture before deciding to take on huge personal debt. If you think a low-rate mortgage is affordable today, what will things look like five or ten years from now at renewal time? Will municipal taxes have increased? You can be certain that by then you will be paying much more for such necessities as hydro, gas and even groceries. What would a jump in mortgage rate do to your bottom line then? And where would you stand if your company froze wages or started downsizing? Minimizing personal debt should become a priority enabling you to weather any storm and allowing you to continue uninterrupted with your wealth-building strategies.

PACE Credit Union has always supported our members by helping educate and assist them in making critical life decisions such as debt management. On a corporate level we operate within a risk management framework that enables us to responsibly evaluate and control our fiscal house on a timely basis. Let us do the same for you to ensure your family finances can withstand difficult times.  Our Personal Account Managers are experienced experts who will guide you through your debt management helping you to keep interest costs low and pay off your debt in a timely manner.

 Larry Smith, President & CEO

Welcome to PACE Credit Union Member Central!

Welcome! We would like to introduce you to PACE Credit Union’s Social Networks!  Member Central is our Social Media hub for all PACE Credit Union information and links.  As well as having this blog, we have joined Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and LinkedIn. 

‘Like Us.  Follow Us.  Watch Us.  Connect with Us.’

We are very excited to announce the beginning of our social media sites.  We have a lot planned and look forward to connecting on a new level with our members and non-members.  We encourage you to ask questions and we will provide you with the answer and the most knowledgeable resources.  We will give helpful financial tips and support you to become well-informed when dealing with your finances.   As well, we will be posting about community events that we support and are involved in along with pictures and videos from each.  Most of all, we want you to know that we are here for you and the community. 

Welcome everyone!