The Board of Directors at Goldenwest Credit Union and USU Charter Credit Union announced today their intent to merge the two Utah-based credit unions. Goldenwest officials say the partnership will bring about one of the strongest financial institutions in Northern Utah with a combined 26 branches, $985 million in assets, and more than 106,000 members. Goldenwest is the ideal strategic partner for us, stated David Butterfield, president/CEO of USU Credit Union. Both credit unions are financially sound, our fields of membership are complementary to one another, and we share similar values for members, employees and the community. USU Credit Union will maintain their familiar brand in Cache Valley, staying true to their roots as an affiliate of Utah State University. The 56-year old credit union will operate as a division of Goldenwest Credit Union. It is important we retain our identity as a credit union that serves the students, faculty, staff and alumni of Utah State University, said Steve Carroll, chairman of USU Credit Union. Our members have tremendous loyalty to the Utah State brand. The merger will provide greater convenience and value to both Goldenwest and USU Credit Union members. Goldenwest has about 2,000 members who currently live in Cache and Box Elder Counties, commented Kerry H. Wahlen, president/CEO of Goldenwest Credit Union. We are excited to bring these members added convenience by serving them in the five USU Credit Union branches. USU Credit Union members will enjoy all membership privileges at Goldenwest’s 21 existing offices. Furthermore, they can access their accounts at thousands of additional branches across the country through the shared branch network. USU Credit Union members will have full access to Goldenwest’s portfolio of products and services, including residential mortgages and commercial loans. This merger will provide tremendous value for our members, and in particular, USU students and alumni, added Butterfield. With the expanded branch network throughout Utah and across the country, USU alumni can easily continue their relationship with our credit union should they leave Cache Valley after graduation. As both credit unions are deemed financially secure, the merger is considered strategic in nature. We feel this partnership is win-win for both Goldenwest and USU Credit Unions, stated Bill Hart, chairman of Goldenwest. We welcome USU members to our credit union family, and invite Goldenwest members to enjoy the added convenience of the five full-service USU branches in northern Utah. The merger is subject to regulatory approval by the NCUA. The intended merger is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2013.