November 2019


Prospera and Westminster Savings members vote overwhelmingly in favour of merger

Surrey and Abbotsford, British Columbia, November 21, 2019:

Members of Prospera Credit Union and Westminster Savings have approved the largest merger in Canadian credit union history. The new credit union will be called Prospera Credit Union and will have the scale and resources to make significant investments in the products and services people want and expect from their financial institutions.

The results were announced today at two special general meetings for members of each respective credit union where all members were thanked for participating in the democratic process, regardless of how they voted. Both memberships needed at least 2/3 of votes cast to be in favour of the merger resolution. The positive vote means that the credit unions will merge effective January 1, 2020. While well underway, the integration process will take months and members will notice very few immediate changes to their banking.

“We’re excited by this outcome because of the opportunities the merger will bring to our members, employees, and local communities,” says Prospera CEO Diane Dou. “This merger means an enhanced ability to invest in the technology, products and services that members and local businesses require – all while keeping our local roots, something we’re known for and that is important to our members. It means even more dynamic and fulfilling careers, better training and professional development opportunities for our valued employees, and an enhanced ability to invest in and support our local communities.”

Merger talks between the two credit unions began 18 months ago. With approval from both boards of directors, a business case was filed earlier this year with BC’s Financial Institutions Commission (FICOM). In September, FICOM gave consent to the two credit unions to take the proposal to a member vote.

“We pursued this merger because we believe that together we can build a stronger credit union, not just today, but for future generations,” says Gavin Toy, CEO of Westminster Savings, who will be CEO of the merged credit union. “We’re thrilled that our members and employees have put their trust in us with this positive vote and look forward to a future where the merged Prospera will have the resources and capital to invest in meeting the financial needs of its members, employees, and communities across British Columbia in ways neither legacy credit union could on its own. Together, we intend to be a financial cooperative that measures its success by the success of our members.”

The merged credit union will be Canada’s sixth largest, with more than $9.0 billion in assets under management, over 120,000 members, 900 employees and 29 full service branch locations. The added scale and resources will allow the merged credit union to invest more in the technology, products and services that members and local businesses now demand and to compete effectively in today’s financial services marketplace. It will also allow for continued significant investment in local charitable endeavors building on the proud history of both credit unions and their commitment to their local communities.

“As a combined entity, we will have a heightened ability to build on our local roots as a community based, purpose-driven organization through even deeper relationships with the communities we serve and support,” says Eric Nadin, Board Chair, Prospera. “We look forward to serving our members the way they want to be served, while maintaining this local focus.”

“By bringing these two well-established and like-minded credit unions together, we are positioning ourselves to innovate and lead, to invest and grow, and to deepen our partnership with our members, employees and the communities we serve,” says Art Van Pelt, Chair of the Board of Directors of Westminster Savings.

In keeping with their commitment to local communities, Prospera and Westminster Savings will donate at least $1 for each ballot received during the special resolution voting period. Prospera will donate $3,318 to the BC Children’s Hospital Foundation and Westminster Savings will donate $5,000 to each of their three community partners (KidSport BC, Arts Umbrella and Special Olympics BC).

For more information on the merged credit union, go to futurestrong.ca.



Media Contacts:

Prospera Credit Union

Jessica Thiessen jthiessen@prospera.ca
Manager,
Communications
604.953.3757
Westminster Savings Credit Union

Jeff McDonald jmcdonald@wscu.com
Manager, Corporate &
Internal Communications
778.875.2574



Financial Literacy Month

Abbotsford, British Columbia, November 5, 2019:

November is Financial Literacy Month in Canada. Now in its fourth year, the focus of the month is to encourage Canadians to take charge of their finances by making a budget, having a savings and debt reduction plan, and understanding their financial rights and responsibilities.

The most common thing that we see holding people back when it comes to learning how to take charge of their finances is fear. This is where we can help.

Improving financial literacy at any age is beneficial. At Prospera, our commitment to make a meaningful difference in the financial well-being of our members extends beyond simply offering financial services, to providing members at all stages of life with the skills and knowledge they need to make good financial decisions.

At Prospera, we provide a wide range of financial literacy materials through our Don’t Just Bank, Prosper Blog. Whatever life stage our readers are at, this blog has something for everyone! On this blog, you can find articles on wealth management, mortgages, budgeting, family, growing your business – and more!

For more information about Financial Literacy Month and some great educational resources, visit the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada.



Media Contact:
Jessica Thiessen 604.953.3757
Manager, Communications jthiessen@prospera.ca

About Prospera Credit Union Expand/Collapse

Building on over 75 years as a BC credit union, Prospera is proud to serve communities from Vancouver to Kelowna. As a member-owned financial institution, our number one priority is the financial well-being of families and businesses in our communities. As a member of The Exchange network, our members also enjoy access to more than 4,000 surcharge free ATMs across Canada (that’s right, no ATM fees).

Making life better for everyone is important at Prospera, which has an extensive community investment program. To learn more about our community programs, check us out on YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Do Some Good.

For all the latest news from Prospera Credit Union, visit our newsroom online at prospera.ca.