6 Bankers Share Views On Competing With CUs

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LAS VEGAS-Credit Union Journal asked six bankers at BAI's Retail Delivery Show how they viewed CUs as competitors in their local market, and the responses ran the gamut from "fierce competitors" to friendly non-rivals to being dismissed entirely.

Ray Zapata, SVP, Frost National Bank, San Antonio
They have a different market than we do, even though some of them are large. We collaborate with credit unions more than we compete. We meet with them in peer groups on a regular basis, and talk at least monthly. They go after a different clientele, so we don't feel we are infringing on each other's territories.

Nicole Kitowski, senior strategy consultant, Associated Bank, Green Bay, Wis.
We are continuing to consider them as a threat. Associate Bank is a small, three-state organization, so we compete directly with credit unions. We need to consider how they are doing business. We are waiting to see how the recent regulations change how they do business.

Teresa Blair, SVP of deposit operations and branch administration, Guaranty Bank, Springfield, Mo.
We see credit unions as fierce competitors, particularly in consumer lending. Based on recent experience, people in credit union branches do a good job on consumer lending from beginning to end.

Tracy Anderson, SVP, retail division, Central National Bank & Trust of Enid, Enid, Okla.
We have some pretty competitive credit unions in our market. There is an Air Force base that a credit union caters to. But we see them as a rate threat, not a customer service threat. They work on getting people in, not on maintaining relationships. 

Tom Stephenson, EVP and chief credit officer, Independent Bank, Memphis, Tenn.
We don't really see them as competitors in our market. They are not as apparent in what we do every day in the niches we serve. We do indirect car lending throughout the Southeast, plus commercial banking.

Mark Samson, senior retail banking manager, Mechanics Savings Bank, Auburn, Maine
In my market they are very strong competition. We are a mutual and credit unions are very aggressive. They have a lot of products and good pricing.

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