September 1, 2021 | Calgary, AB – After launching its new brand promising to find ways to make banking more meaningful to Albertans, connectFirst Credit Union (connectFirst) saw unprecedented growth in its third quarter, marking the strongest financial performance in the credit union’s 83-year history.
After closing the third quarter on July 31, 2021, connectFirst saw $157 million in loan growth across all lines of business, including consumer, small business, agriculture, and commercial. For the first three quarters of fiscal 2021, connectFirst witnessed an extraordinary $16.4 million in net income, a 16% increase from the same period in 2019 and more than doubling results from 2020.
“As Alberta continues to struggle with higher unemployment and retracted economic growth, connectFirst designed its new value proposition to meet the needs of those feeling stressed about their finances and about our province’s future,” says Wellington Holbrook, chief operating officer, connectFirst Credit Union. “And with this being our strongest quarter in our credit union’s history, we see this as confirmation that our new value proposition is really resonating with Albertans at a time when they need us most,” Holbrook continues.
connectFirst’s recent evolution has been transforming all areas of the business. With the introduction of a new line of business to support independent businesses and entrepreneurs, connectFirst has seen steady membership growth over the past three quarters, attracting a younger demographic who want to carve out a new economic path for themselves. Meanwhile, after launching connectFirst Wealth in January 2020, the credit union aims to increase accessibility to wealth advice, dispelling the myth that wealth is only for the affluent. This offering has resulted in their highest gross sales month in connectFirst history, with $64 million in sales in the third quarter.
“Credit Unions are steeped in the history of supporting economic recovery, and as Alberta is in an economic transition, people are noticing how we’re once again leaning in to meet the needs of Albertans as we rebuild our province’s future together,” says Paul Kelly, chief executive officer, connectFirst Credit Union. “When you bank with our credit union, you’re banking on Alberta.”
connectFirst continues to signal its commitment to Alberta’s future as it expands into Medicine Hat, with further plans to introduce itself to new markets across Alberta in the near future. The credit union continues to support its communities, including significant investments in Ag for Life, Small Business Week, Made in Alberta Awards as well in becoming a founding investor in Emmertech, an Ag-tech focused venture capital fund.
About connectFirst Credit Union
connectFirst Credit Union, one of the largest and most successful credit unions in Canada, is a full-service financial institution with over $6 billion in assets under administration. connectFirst employs 750 Albertans who provide a range of financial products and advice in more than 40 communities across central and southern Alberta. It serves over 125,000 members through a community-focused approach to banking.