Central 1 and Credit Union Central Alberta discontinue merger discussions

VANCOUVER AND CALGARY, March 8, 2012 /CNW/ - Central 1 Credit Union ("Central 1") and Credit Union Central Alberta Ltd. ("Alberta Central") announced today the cessation of merger discussions initiated in 2011 to explore enhancing services to more than 190 credit unions in B.C., Alberta and Ontario.

As announced in October 2011, Central 1 and Alberta Central have been engaged in consultations to evaluate whether an opportunity exists through consolidation to achieve efficiencies, offer a stronger liquidity structure, greater diversification of funding sources and better capacity in the areas of finance, payments and trade services.

"Our preliminary discussions focused  on whether or not a potential merger might enhance our capacity to better meet the needs of credit unions and support their continued expansion in the marketplace," says Graham Wetter, president and chief executive officer, Alberta Central. "We have not been able to make the progress that we had hoped to, and have concluded that we should focus on other priorities, at this time."

Don Rolfe, Central 1's president and chief executive officer, states that, "What is most important for both of our organizations is the effective support of our growing and vibrant credit union systems. Although we do not believe our combination is currently achievable, Central 1 and Alberta Central will continue to explore whether opportunities to collaborate exist that will bring greater benefits to credit unions in all three provinces."

Central 1 and Alberta Central act as the central financial facilities and trade associations for the B.C. and Ontario, and the Alberta, credit union systems respectively.

About Central 1 Credit Union

With offices in Vancouver, Mississauga and Toronto, Central 1 represents 45 credit unions in B.C. and 112 credit unions in Ontario, that combined, serve more than 2.9 million members. Central 1 holds $15 billion in assets and employs more than 550 staff. For more information, visit www.central1.com.

About Alberta Central

Alberta Central is headquartered in Calgary, Alberta and represents 34 credit unions from across the province that serve more than 646,000 members. Alberta Central has assets over $2 billion and approximately 230 staff.  For more information, visit www.albertacentral.com.

For further information:

Art Chamberlain
Media Relations Manager
Central 1 Credit Union
Telephone: 905.282.8534
Mobile: 416.540.0869
Email: achamberlain@central1.com

Alexandra Frison
Manager, Communications
Credit Union Central Alberta
Telephone: 403.258.5971
Email: alexandra.frison@albertacentral.com