Dear SECU Members,
The Boards of Shell Employees’ Credit Union (SECU) and Maritime, Mining & Power Credit Union (MMPCU) are pleased to announce that they have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding that will enable each entity to work together on merging the two organisations.
The Australian financial services industry has become increasingly consolidated over the past decade, driven by intense market competition, continuing downward pressure on interest margins and an increase in costs. We have also been subjected to more demanding regulatory and compliance obligations, which in turn have required significant investment in new technology, more robust corporate governance structures and enhanced management expertise. We are also mindful that we also need to keep investing in additional products and services to meet your needs.
As a relatively small institution, we have been particularly exposed to the additional cost pressures of the market and regulatory challenges, along with the need to invest into a new office relocation and the associated costs. The Board has been monitoring the situation and has determined that the best way to address these challenges and meet your needs is to merge with MMPCU.
MMPCU was originally formed in 1970 to serve maritime workers and their families. From these beginnings MMPCU has expanded to include mining and energy workers and their families and, through the Reliance brand, has a significant community membership in the Central West of NSW. MMPCU has over 34,000 members with an asset base of $820 million and 28 branches across Australia.
This merger with MMPCU, a like-minded credit union, will allow the merged entity to continue to provide a compelling customer owned banking alternative to our members through greater scale and efficiencies. There will be no change to the mutual structure of the merged entity with the focus to remain on serving the interests of members.
The merger will give SECU members access to both existing and new services such as a wide range of competitively priced home loan products, Visa credit cards, Paywave, over 8,450 direct charge free ATMs across Australia, expanded call centre hours along with access to 28 branches across Australia. Importantly we are very confident that this merger will lead to pricing benefits for both our borrowing and saving members.
Both Boards are committed to ensuring that there will be no job losses with the merger and that new and exciting career opportunities will be available for staff. To represent SECU members within the merged entity, one of the current SECU Directors will join the MMPCU Board.
Both credit unions are in a strong financial position, and the Boards are mindful of the importance of planning for the future to ensure that the organisation’s longevity and successful delivery of members’ needs is sustained for many generations to come.
The merger will be subject to regulatory and SECU member approval and is expected to be completed in the first half of 2016. Over the next few months we will provide additional details on the merger and hold a member information session to answer any questions you may have. I look forward to seeing you then.
Our Board is delighted to be entering into this merger and we are very excited about the opportunities that this partnership will create for our members and staff.
Ray Shina - Chairman
Shell Employees' Credit Union Ltd - SECU