September 11, 2019
Today, the boards of the Estonian (Toronto) Credit Union Limited (ECU) and Latvian Credit Union (LCU) announce the approval of an amalgamation agreement and business plan for submission to the Financial Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario for regulatory review, after which our members will be asked to approve this amalgamation.
After a thorough due diligence process and collaborative business planning, our community- based credit union boards have determined that both credit unions will be stronger as a result of the amalgamation.
In an increasingly fast moving world, where digital banking and technology are taking centre stage, we will be better able to serve our members with the latest products and services, while continuing to provide an ongoing link to our cultural and historic roots and support of our communities.
History of Collaboration
The Estonian and Latvian people have a long history of collaboration as neighbours on the Baltic Sea and as kindred communities in Toronto. By joining together, we can continue to provide the security and comfort of our very own banking institution that cares about its members and gives back to our communities, while providing access to the latest modern banking services.
Members and Employees Come First
As co-operative financial institutions, our members always come first. Both ECU & LCU have worked hard through the due diligence and business planning process to ensure the best interests of our members continue to be top priority and at the forefront of the amalgamation process.
Employees of both credit unions will have improved opportunities for professional development and career advancement, while continuing to work in an environment supportive of their ethnic cultural heritage and community.
Location of Branches
ECU is located in Toronto and currently serves the Estonian community with over 4,700 members. ECU is deeply involved in the community and will, within the next couple of years, be re-locating to the newly built International Estonian Centre on Madison Avenue near Bloor Street & Spadina Avenue.
LCU is located in Toronto, with a branch in Hamilton, and currently serves the Latvian community with over 1,500 members. LCU is also deeply rooted in the community and with the additional resources from the merger, will be expanding products and services, as well as focusing on greater involvement within the Latvian community.
All three branches will become part of the amalgamated credit union and will be open to all members.
We anticipate the amalgamation agreement will receive regulatory approval. Once approved, the agreement will be voted on by both memberships at Special Meetings, which we expect to call in November.
Subject to normal conditions of regulatory and membership approvals, the amalgamation is slated to take effect January 1, 2020.
As we move forward into this exciting new phase together, and look ahead to the next 60 years, we will need to develop a new brand and identity that speaks to all our members and potential members in our communities; hopefully with an eye to attracting other Baltic credit unions to join us, and new members from the multi-cultural Toronto community. We will look to stay true to our roots and cultural heritage and proudly share these, strengthening our communities and ensuring our growth.