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Rivermark + Advantis

Together for good.

Rivermark & Advantis Proud to Announce Merger Agreement

We have some exciting news to share with our members and community. Following a thorough due diligence process that met the satisfaction of both credit unions, Rivermark and Advantis Credit Union are proud to share that we have signed a merger agreement and plan to unite as one credit union in the latter part of 2024.

Together, we can do more good – for our members and our community. And because of this, the merger has the unanimous support of the board of directors of both institutions (comprised of Advantis and Rivermark members), as well as their respective CEOs and leadership teams.

Next, both credit unions are jointly applying for and expect to receive state and federal regulatory approval. Following this step, legal merger of both credit unions is likely to occur in Q3 or Q4 of this year.

We know you’ll likely have questions after hearing this news and welcome you to review the FAQs below. We’ll also continue to share progress updates as we move forward. You may also read the announcement from Rivermark’s CEO to our members.


Hear From the CEOs

Benefits for Our Members

Rivermark and Advantis are pursing a merger because of the impact we can create, together. This union will give us the scale and financial resources to:

  • Deliver more benefits to our members, faster – including more locations, advanced technology offerings, and enhanced products and services.

  • Break out in a crowded market to do more good. There are 65 total credit unions and banks in the Portland metro area. A combined credit union, at 180,000 members strong and $3.4 billion in assets, will give us the scale to give back to our members and our community in even more impactful ways.

  • Become the leader in fostering financial wellness for our members and the broader community in Oregon and SW Washington, including historically marginalized and underserved communities.

2x the branches + extended teller hours. 

You’ll have access to 19 branches in Oregon and SW Washington with extended teller services hours (M-F, 8am-8pm; Sat, 10am-6pm). That’s twice the locations to get financial coaching and guidance to help you reach your goals. No branches will be closed.

Financial coaches at your service – in-branch or via video. 

Financial wellness is important at both credit unions, and this creates a multiplying effect! With over 75 nationally certified financial coaches across both organizations, including over 20 bilingual coaches, we’ll meet our members where they are on their financial journey.

More impact for your community. 

Advantis and Rivermark have established a combined purpose: to transform lives and communities, together. That may sound like a tall order, but we’re up to the task, through financial coaching & wellness programs, philanthropic giving, volunteerism, non-profit partnerships, and much more.

Improved digital banking. 

We’ll have the resources to invest in more technology, providing you with innovative digital tools at your fingertips, now and into the future.

Enhanced products and services. 

We expect to be able to return more value to you in the form of better products and services, market-leading rates, lower fees, and more free services.

Same knowledgeable, caring employees. 

We’re not going anywhere. You’ll see the same friendly faces, just in more places!

Hear From Our Staff

Frequently Asked Questions

We’ve made substantial progress; however, a few important steps remain. Following the completion of a thorough due diligence process that met the satisfaction of both credit unions, the boards of Advantis and Rivermark have unanimously supported and signed a legal merger agreement to move forward. Additionally, a legal merger will require state and federal regulatory approval and a required vote by Advantis members.

While subject to change, if everything continues forward without major delay, here’s a general timeline:

  • First half of 2024: Applying for and expectation of receiving regulatory approval
  • Last half of 2024: The credit unions will legally merge following regulatory approval
  • Remainder of 2024 into 2025: Work to combine the systems and operations of the two organizations

Yes. Both Advantis and Rivermark are exceptionally safe and strong. Both have capital (or a rainy-day fund) exceeding the regulatory standard for “well-capitalized” credit unions, and continually operate within the regulatory definition of “safe and sound” practices. We also both have a strong liquidity position and maintain a balanced loan-to-deposit ratio. The strong safety and soundness of both credit unions only reinforced the Board and leadership’s interest in merging.

There will be no change to accounts, loans, or online banking access until late 2024 and/or 2025. While we can’t yet relay specifics regarding accounts at this early stage, please be assured that we’ll be bringing forward the best product offerings from both credit unions. You’ll continue to enjoy the same or improved products and online banking solutions you have today. 

There will be no change to account features or fees until late 2024 and/or 2025. As a larger combined institution, Advantis and Rivermark will continue to provide market-leading rates, low fees, and more free services to our members. While we won’t be making any account changes until at least late 2024 and don’t have these details yet, please be assured we’re focused on continuing to bring you the financial value you’ve come to expect! The rates on fixed-rate loans and certificates will remain the same until the end of their existing terms.

Advantis branches will not be available to Rivermark members until after legal merger and the integration of our systems (likely 2025). We know you’re excited about 2X the branches and appreciate your patience! We’ll let you know as soon as the 19-branch network is available to all members.

Members accounts will continue to be fully insured by the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund (NCUSIF) to at least $250,000 per individual post-merger. And while we understand that insurance brings important peace of mind, you should also know that no depositor has ever lost a penny on insured accounts at any federally insured credit union in the United States. This is especially true given the exceptional financial strength of both Advantis and Rivermark.

If a member has over $250,000, including within accounts at both credit unions, there are options for additional share insurance coverage as well, as the NCUSIF provides separate additional insurance for other accounts and ownership structures, such as individual accounts, joint accounts, individual retirement accounts and trust accounts. If you have funds exceeding $250,000 and would like the peace of mind of additional insurance, we welcome you to reach out to a member advisor as we approach the time of legal merger (or shortly after). They can provide resources that will help you determine how you’d like to structure your accounts to maximize your share insurance above $250,000. An excellent resource for members to review now is NCUA’s Share Insurance FAQ. There are also special rules that apply to mergers to the benefit of members. For example, both Rivermark and Advantis member accounts will be separately insured for six months after the legal merger date, and in the case of Certificates of Deposit (CD), will continue to be separately insured based on the earliest maturity date after the six months period. This gives our members plenty of time to work with a member advisor to determine the best insurance coverage to meet their needs!

Following the legal merger, Advantis will assume Rivermark’s charter, which means Advantis members will vote on this merger to move forward (as required by regulation). In every credit union merger, one of the credit unions must assume the charter of the other, with it being referred to as the “continuing credit union.” This reference should be considered in the strictest legal sense (related to the charter only) and does not mean Rivermark is acquiring Advantis ─ we will combine our assets, resources, and staff as equal partners.

Rivermark has been certified as a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) by the U.S. Department of the Treasury. CDFIs are mission-driven organizations that focus on serving low-income and underserved communities, and allows for the credit union to secure additional grants to do highly impactful work in the community. The CDFI certification is tied to Rivermark’s charter, which means the merged credit union will have a much greater chance of maintaining this highly sought after designation.

No, there is nothing you need to do at this time. We will not make any account improvements or changes until late 2024 and/or 2025, well after our legal merger date. It will be our top priority to make any transitions as seamless as possible. We’ll keep any work on your part as minimal as possible, giving you plenty of advance notice, helpful guidance, and dedicated support before any change.

No, neither credit union is taking over the other. This is a true merger of equals, with two credit unions uniting as one and bringing forward the best of both into a combined organization. The discussions and decisions to get to this point have been entirely collaborative in nature, have the unanimous support of both boards of directors (made up of Advantis and Rivermark members) and respective leadership teams, and we’re both excited about the potential of what we can achieve together.

We hear you, and want to affirm that the core values you appreciate about being a Rivermark member will not change. As our CEO shared in a recent letter to members, we don’t take the decision to consider a merger lightly. We have deep respect for Advantis Credit Union and the substantial impact they bring to those they serve. Just like Rivermark, they are a local, member-owned cooperative, and together we want to become the leader in providing financial wellness to our members and community. It’s our vision, and our north star as we join forces to do more good.

Yes. Both organizations are committed to providing exceptional member service and this will continue to be a focus for the combined organization.

Yes! In fact, we’d be hard-pressed to find another organization that is more like (each of) us. Both credit unions have deeply held values around providing financial empowerment and advocacy for its members, supporting and fostering diversity, equity, and inclusion, and making a difference in our communities. We also share a deep commitment to better serving historically marginalized and underserved communities. We’re proudly progressive and inclusive – as financial institutions, employers, and community partners.

Headquartered in Oregon City, Oregon and founded in 1928 by city and county employees, Advantis Credit Union today serves over 90,000 members with assets of $2.0 billion at its 9 branch locations. Advantis’ mission is to “Improve the financial lives of our members” by being personally invested in their financial wellness.

Like Rivermark, Advantis was founded decades ago, formed by a group of co-workers committed to pooling their resources to support each other with affordable loans and stronger savings rates. Our beginnings were with grocery store employees, and Advantis with city and county employees. While our member bases were different, each credit union had – and continues to have – a strong commitment to low-cost financial services for hardworking people, especially those who need them most.

Our employees can feel secure in their jobs, as they play the most vital role in how we serve our members and uphold our shared mission. When this merger moves forward, we’ll need all hands on deck to make it happen. We will not reduce overall staffing levels because of this merger. In fact, a larger organization is likely to provide greater future growth opportunities for employees.

Jason Werts, current President & CEO of Advantis, will be the President & CEO of the combined organization. Seth Schaefer, current President & CEO of Rivermark, will serve as Executive Vice President and Chief Impact Officer. Seth’s role and his division will be dedicated to delivering sustainable impact to our members and the community, with oversight over financial wellness, advocacy and strategy, community impact, communications, and diversity, equity, and inclusion programs and initiatives. This merger has the full support of both Jason and Seth, as well as the executive and leadership teams of both organizations.

Yes, the name of the combined credit union will be Rivermark Community Credit Union.

Why not a new name? Both credit unions have strong and respected brands in our local market, and because of this valuable brand equity, it was much wiser to choose a known and respected name versus an entirely new name with no brand awareness. This will give us an advantage in terms of growth potential and the results we can achieve in a local market that’s largely saturated with 37 total credit unions (in Portland metro alone).

Why did we choose the Rivermark name? While both names had strong brand awareness based on a recent market study of local consumers, Rivermark had higher brand awareness, especially in Washington and Clackamas counties. This gives us a real jump start, with more of our community being aware of our combined name. In addition, the name Rivermark is more unique (with very few organizations having this name nationwide), has Federal trademarks that provide greater brand protection, and it evokes a “local feel” among consumers and members with its reference to the rivers characteristic of our area.

This does not mean Advantis is being acquired by Rivermark, but simply that we’ve chosen one of the existing two names as we come together in a merger of equals. While we are assuming the Rivermark name, Advantis and Rivermark are combining our assets, resources, staff, policies, and programs as equal partners, and in largely equal measure.