Advia Credit Union To Acquire Peoples Bank


Cheryl DeBoer, Advia

KALAMAZOO, Mich.—The $1.3-billion Advia Credit Union here said it intends to acquire the $230-million Peoples Bank of Elkhorn, Wis.

If the deal is completed, it will mark the second time a credit union has made two bank purchases.

In 2016 Advia acquired Mid America Bank in Janesville, Wis. Previously, the $330-million Alabama-based Five Star CU purchased the $23-million Flint River National Bank in Camilla, Ga., and closed a deal with $47-million Farmers State Bank in Lumpkin, Ga.

Advia’s second deal is pending bank shareholder and state and federal regulator approvals. It is expected to close in the third quarter of 2017. The price of the deal was not disclosed.

“We are thrilled to have the opportunity to welcome the customers of Peoples Bank as members of Advia Credit Union,” said Advia President and CEO Cheryl DeBoer. “At Advia our mission is to provide financial advantages to those we serve, with services that are designed to promote financial health for a lifetime. We are equally dedicated to advancing lives in our communities and look forward to being a key contributor to the southern Wisconsin communities through outreach, volunteerism and financial literacy education.”

“We are pleased with the proposed transaction and we believe Peoples Bank’s customers, employees, communities and shareholders will all benefit,” added Tom Oehler, president and CEO of Peoples Bank. “Advia is a strong financial institution that has the size, resources, and commitment necessary to competitively meet the financial needs not only of our consumer clients but also our commercial, agricultural, municipal, and non-profit customers now and in the foreseeable future.”

28 Locations

The 60-employee bank’s four offices will bring Advia’s total branch locations to 28, across the states of Wisconsin, Illinois, and Michigan.


Michael Bell

“Advia is committed to growing stronger within our multi-state regions,” said DeBoer.

“In general, the credit unions that have completed a transaction like this are looking to do more,” said Michael Bell, attorney and counselor with Royal-Oak, Mich.-based Howard & Howard, who is representing Advia. “Advia will be the second CU to complete two of these deals. These transactions provide asset, loan and member growth along with geographic expansion opportunities.” 

Bell has been part of 12 CU/bank deals, including one merger of a bank into a credit union.

If the Advia deal is finalized, it will be the 13th time a credit union has acquired a bank since 2011, when Michigan's $1.6-billion United FCU pioneered such purchases by acquiring $81-million Griffith Savings Bank in Indiana.

More Bank Deals

In addition to Advia’s purchase last year of the $84-million Mid America Bank, the $580-million Family Security Credit Union in Decatur, Ala., agreed to purchase the $25-million Bank of Pine Hill, located in Pine Hill, Ala.

In 2015 the $607-million Avadian Credit Union in Birmingham, Ala., signed an agreement to purchase the $127-million American Bank of Huntsville, located in Huntsville, Ala. Also in 2015, the $1.8-billion Royal CU in Eau Clair, Wis., agreed to acquire Capital Bank in Saint Paul, Minn. And the $1.1-billion Achieva CU, Dunedin, Fla., signed an agreement to acquire the $165-million Calusa Bank based in Punta Gorda, Fla. The deal marked what is believed to be the first time in history a credit union merged with a bank, rather than do a purchase-and-assumption.

In addition to the United, Advia, Achieva, Avadian and Fiver Star agreements, the other CU/bank deals to date: the $1.2-billion Municipal Employees CU of Baltimore purchased local $61-million Advance Bank; Wisconsin's $2.1-billion Landmark CU acquired $190-million Hartford Savings Bank; and Massachusetts' $429-million GFA FCU bought New Hampshire's $83-million Monadnock Savings Bank.

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