Coast Capital vies to become a national credit union

Surrey, B.C.-based Coast Capital Savings Credit Union (CU) has received a vote of confidence from its members to go ahead with plans to apply for federal CU status.

Of the 79,726 members who voted, 79.2% cast their ballot in favour of the special resolution, which was voted on between Oct. 17 and Nov. 28. The special resolution had to receive support from a minimum of two-thirds of members for the motion to pass, according to Coast Capital’s announcement, released on Wednesday.

“I’d like to thank all members who took the time to participate in this important vote, which has not only determined the future direction of Coast Capital Savings but also will provide Canadians with additional banking choices,” says Bill Cooke, chairman of the board at Coast Capital, in a statement. “With such a high turnout of voting members, it’s clear the vote represents the broad will of the membership.”

The CU now has the support it requires to seek regulatory approval for federal CU status from the Credit Union Deposit Insurance Corp., Financial Institutions Commission, Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions and the federal minister of finance. This process is expected to take a year, the announcement states.

If granted regulatory approval, the move to federal CU status and the ensuing growth in new members would enhance the CU’s competitiveness in a rapidly changing marketplace. This would provide the organization with more resources to invest in products and services and a stronger ability to develop technology suited to growing online and mobile banking needs, the announcement states.

“Our members are owners of this credit union and when our business grows, they benefit,” says Don Coulter, president and CEO of Coast Capital, in a statement. “Existing members will continue to receive the friendly, helpful service we’re known for in B.C. and, in future, they’ll also have the convenience of banking with us elsewhere in Canada.”

The result of the special resolution was announced at a special general meeting on Dec. 14. If Coast Capital’s application is approved, the organization would be the second CU to expand across the country through federal banking legislation enacted in 2012 that allows CUs to operate outside of their home province. Caraquet, N.B.-based UNI Financial Co-operation became Canada’s first federal CU in July.

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