Matt Piazza, CEO, Atlantic Financial Credit Union
For three years, Atlantic Financial Federal Credit Union ($91.4M, Hunt Valley, MD) has paid a bonus dividend to members in good standing at the Maryland-based cooperative. The individual payout calculation is based on the number of share account and loan products members hold with the credit union during a given year.
For 2015 and 2016, the credit union paid more than $90,000 to members each year. This past year, Atlantic Financial paid $80,000 in bonus dividends.
Here, credit union CEO Matt Piazza discusses Atlantic Financial’s great give back.
CU QUICK FACTS
Atlantic Financial FCU
Data as of 06.30.18
HQ: Hunt Valley, MD
12-MO SHARE GROWTH: 0.4%
12-MO LOAN GROWTH: 15.1%
How does the credit union determine it can pay a dividend?
Matt Piazza: Our board requests we budget a specific amount, generally around $80,000-$90,000. No specific goal is required to pay this dividend.
How do you calculate how much to return and to whom?
MP: The board decides how to distribute. One year it was 2.5% interest paid on loans and a 2.5% dividend paid. This past year, we split the pool into two equal amounts and distributed between shares and loans.
What is the advantage of returning value in this way?
MP: It returns value to members beyond the great value they already receive. Additionally, the members are owners and should receive additional dividends when the credit union has a good year.
What communication channels do you use to announce and communicate the value of the dividend?
MP: We’ve used press releases, emails, and social media.
How do you return the money? How much did you return in your latest round?
MP: We directly deposit it into the member’s primary share account. We returned roughly $80,000 in January of 2018.
This interview has been edited and condensed.
Whether and when a credit union offers a patronage dividend varies across organizations. As does how they calculate the return and communicate the occasion. Read more Q&As from CreditUnions.com’s ICU Day special feature.