Large CU, Small CU Strike Deal To Take over Branch

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Arkansas FCU here has struck a deal with the much smaller United Arkansas FCU in which UAFCU will take over a facility Arkansas Federal is vacating.

For the past five years the $335-million Arkansas FCU has operated a storefront branch in West Little Rock, but has opened a freestanding facility. Having made a considerable investment in the 2,000-square-foot facility, AFCU CEO Hank Klein said his CU sent packages to other CUs offering the entire operation for sale.

"We left the computers, security system, safe, teller drawers, artwork, desks, everything a credit union would need to start up, even the waste baskets," he said. "Practically, all a credit union would need to do is have new data lines and their own cash, and they would be in business."

Four credit unions made inquiries, but most interested was the $12.7-million United Arkansas, which could not afford the full asking price. AFCU accepted what UAFCU could afford to pay. "This was just too good of a deal to pass up. It had everything we needed to open a branch," said Joe Weinsinger, president of UAFCU. "We will now be able to do things we never could do before."

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