Achieva Credit Union in Dunedin, Fla., has agreed to buy Preferred Community Bank in Fort Myers, Fla.

The $1.5 billion-asset Achieva said in a press release Wednesday that it expects to complete the purchase of the $100 million-asset Preferred later this year. Achieva did not disclose the price it agreed to pay.

Preferred was formed in 2007. It has three branches in the Florida communities of Fort Myers, Lehigh Acres and Cape Coral.

“This consolidation of complementary services and products along with our entry into new markets makes this combination a strong strategic move for Achieva,” Gary Regoli, the credit union’s CEO, said in the release.

“Our corporate cultures are greatly aligned which is a key ingredient in any successful consolidation,” Regoli added. “Additionally, we already have a presence in the Lee County community with three branches, and we are excited about becoming an even stronger part of this vibrant community.”

Achieva, which has completed several bank deals, also formed a consulting service to help other credit unions interested in buying community banks.

Achieva’s purchase marks the 20th time a credit has bought a bank since 2009, said Michael Bell, a lawyer at Howard & Howard in Royal Oak, Mich., who assisted in the deal. The pace is unlikely to slow down in the near future, he added.

“I'm expecting a few more transactions of this nature to announce in the next probably 30 to 60 days," Bell said, adding that most of those deals are concentrated in the Southeast and Midwest. "The activity level is extremely high."

Achieva has bought several small banks in recent years. Adobe Stock

Subscribe Now

Access to authoritative analysis and perspective and our data-driven report series.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.