ACUMA TV Offers NewWay To 'Attend' Meeting

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LAS VEGAS-With credit union travel budgets still stretched thin, ACUMA is offering access to its 2010 Fall Conference this week via a live telecast at a reduced rate.

The conference will be held at the M Resort here Sept. 15-17. Bob Dorsa, the trade group's CEO, told Credit Union Journal projected attendance has picked up in recent weeks with a late rush of registrations, but ACUMA wanted to do something for those who could not make it in person but still wanted the information.

"It occurred to me people are getting used to watching webcasts on their PC and I have a high-quality camera, so I talked to our tech guys and they made it happen," he said. "With ACUMA TV, anybody on the planet can log in and see 12 hours of quality speakers. It is so new, it is hard for people to conceive of what they are getting. For a couple hundred dollars, it could move a credit union in a positive way and perhaps perpetuate its future."

In-person conference registration is $979 for ACUMA members, $1,199 for non-members. There is a sliding scale for virtual attendance: the lowest price for all three days is for ACUMA members that also have someone in person at the show ($285), followed by members but not present ($420) and then non-members ($645).

Single-day viewing options also are available, likewise on a sliding scale following the same three tiers and ranging from $125 to $425. Full details and registration are available at

Dorsa said he is not worried about cutting into live attendance by offering the content via streaming video. He noted there have been no cancellations following the announcement content would be available online.

"The people who are there understand the value of networking," he declared. "Getting the knowledge from the speakers is one thing, but people always tell us in our surveys the No. 1 thing they get out of the conference is networking."

"Our agenda covers many different topics, from developing relationships with Realtors to bridging the generational gap with younger people," said Dorsa. "When I read that loan demand is low I go nuts, because there are more loans than credit unions would ever want if we could just leverage the other 96% of possible loans. Credit unions only have 3.6% market share of first mortgage loans as of the first quarter of 2010. We allow nine out of 10 of our members to go elsewhere for a mortgage, which is a combination of not telling members about what we do and the rest of the world not being aware of credit unions. If we address that and get it to 6%, 7% or 8% share, that would be loan growth."

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