Ryan - Announcement

From Ryan Reed, EVP,

      “Hello, for those of you who do not know me personally, my name is Ryan Reed and I am the Executive Vice President of Lincoln Maine Federal Credit Union. We have some very exciting news to present here at the credit union.

The Board of Directors of Lincoln Maine FCU is pleased to announce for your consideration a proposed merger with EastMill FCU.

Now I realize when you hear the word merger, your mind may immediately form a certain opinion. Let me give some background for clarification, and some foresight on what we envision. First off, in strategic planning a few years ago, we reviewed our continuous effort to grow our credit union to better support our members. We offer many excellent products and services to our members, but it is no surprise that when you think of LMFCU, you instantly think great loan rates. It is true, we pride ourselves in offering member driven rates to allow you the affordability of making those purchases you desire in life.

I won’t bore you with a lot of statistics, but I will tell you that Callahan & Associates, a credit union data and analytics company, recently ranked Lincoln Maine Federal Credit Union 8th in our peer group for the nation, for Return of the Member. That means that we are in the top 8 in the country, based on an index that quantifies member value. So, realizing that we are of great value to you, we sought out ways to be able to bring even more value.

After evaluating several possible options, the one that we felt had the most member benefit, was to look into a partnership with EastMill FCU. One of our priorities here has always been finding ways to reduce expenses for the credit union. One way that many businesses are doing that, especially nowadays, is through the economy of scale. By combining two separate identities into one, you can greatly reduce your operating cost. For example, when two credit unions each offer online banking, there are considerable savings to be realized by both using the same platform. This savings further compounds when you take advantage of that scenario with other common expenses.

So, why would we look to EastMill FCU specifically. We feel that out of all possible partners, EastMill shares our common roots, and embodies our core values. Both of our credit unions were formed in strong paper mill towns. We have both had to learn to survive through all of the ups and downs that the industry endured, and then ultimately learn to adapt after both mills, our largest employers, were permanently shut down.

Another reason that EastMill is a great partner for us, is portfolio diversification. As I already discussed, Lincoln Maine FCU has a very strong loan portfolio, one of the best in the business. Similarly, but in a separate category, EastMill FCU has an excellent investment portfolio. One of the pillars to financial security that I have always heard, is diversity in your portfolio.

By combining our two financially sound credit unions, we truly believe that we can offer even more exceptional products and services to you, our member owners.

So, what would change? Well, for starters, you would have two more branch locations available to you, East Millinocket and Patten. Our combined credit union will be approximately $170 million in assets, and serve more than 10,000 member accounts. We would also be able to offer membership to people living in southern and central Aroostook County after the merger.

As part of this cohesive process, we will be launching a rebranding of our credit unions, with one new name that brings together each location’s heritage, and further solidifies the bond we are forming. We will be eager to share the name with you once the branding and imaging are complete.

Every employee at each credit union location will remain employed, and each credit union’s Board of Directors and Supervisory Committee members will continue to serve.

Here are the next steps in the process. All members in good-standing will be receiving a merger letter and ballot in the mail in the coming days. A special meeting of the Lincoln Maine FCU membership will also be called to consider the merger plan and provide an open forum to address questions and comments from the membership. Due to the continued COVID-19 pandemic, this meeting will be held virtually on 12/30/21, and will be explained in the mailing.

Thank you for taking the time to listen to this announcement. I want to close by recognizing that our staff sincerely appreciates all of our member support in what we do, and we will strive to keep you best informed as this unifying opportunity moves forward. Have a great night.”

Check out Ryan’s announcement video!


More FAQs to come.