Air Academy joins forces with Independent Group

Filed under: Banking & Finance |

Colorado Springs-based Air Academy Federal Credit Union has merged with Independent Group Credit Union.

The merger brings the credit union’s assets to more than $303 million, and membership to more than 45,000.

Independent Group Credit Union’s office at 705 N. Nevada Ave. will take on the Air Academy Federal Credit Union name, but remain staffed with Independent Group’s employees.

“In AAFCU, we found a merger candidate that closely mirrors our mission, vision and goals, said Independent Group President and CEO Jim Gillespie. “We are confident they will provide the best possible financial services to members.”

IGCU customers can no longer conduct transactions using IGCU Visa credit cards, and all outstanding balances on the cards will be converted to a signature loan with Air Academy Federal Credit Union at the same rate.

Customers must qualify for Air Academy Federal Credit Union credit cards. Customers that had a Home Equity Line of Credit with Independent Group Credit Union may qualify for a line of credit with a lower percentage rate with Air Academy Federal Credit Union.

Independent Group was chartered in 1950 as Interstate Gas Credit Union by employees of Colorado Interstate Gas.

Air Academy Federal Credit Union also is beginning construction on its newest branch at the corner of Union and Academy boulevards, in the northeast corner of the Safeway parking lot. The branch is scheduled to open in early fall, bringing the number of local Air Academy Federal Credit Union branches to 12.

New Wells Fargo branch on the horizon

Wells Fargo plans to open a new branch in Fountain during the next 12 months, said Regional President Gene Sullivan.

The company is waiting for the arrival of additional troops from the 4th Infantry Division from Fort Hood, Texas, before building will begin.

The bank, which has 24 branches in the Pikes Peak region, also is considering opening a branch in the northeast Powers Boulevard corridor, Sullivan said.

Charles Schwab hits record

The Charles Schwab Corp.’s net income for the quarter ended March 2007 was $273 million, a $30 million increase compared to the first quarter 2006.

An additional $17.8 billion in net new assets that was associated with the acquisition of The 401(k) Co. helped total client assets rise by 16 percent year-over-year for a record $1.31 trillion.

Schwab also expanded its offerings for newly independent advisers through a partnership with Cambridge Investment Research to house both fee- and commission-based assets. The company also introduced start-up financing, as well as expanded partnerships.

Using green to be green

Wells Fargo & Co. is offering clean, renewable energy reward options to its credit and check cardholders.

The bank says it is the first financial institution to do so.

Through Wells Fargo rewards programs, consumer and business credit card and check card customers can redeem reward points to support renewable energy projects and receive certificates for their donations.

Cardholders who are enrolled in one of the optional rewards programs can earn points for nearly every purchase they make. For 5,000 points, cardholders can support 6,000 kilowatt hours of green power, the equivalent to the clean air benefits of three acres of pine forest storing carbon for one year.

For 10,000 points, cardholders can support the development of enough green power to offset the more than seven tons of greenhouse gas emissions — the emissions from typical residential electricity use for a year, based on average consumption rates.

In 2006, Wells Fargo was named the largest purchaser of renewable energy in the United States according to the Environmental Protection Agency’s Green Power Partnership program.

Venture capital investment in Colorado down in 1Q

Venture capital investments in Colorado during the first quarter 2007 were down more than $7 million to $106.05 million, according to the Quarterly Venture Capital Report released by the Dow Jones VentureOne and Ernst & Young LLP.

Nationally, venture capital investments in U.S. companies increased 8 percent during the first quarter of 2007 compared to the same period in 2006 to reach $6.96 billion, according to the report.

In Colorado, the number of deals reached for the quarter was eight, down from the 18 deals reached during the first quarter 2006. Every industry sector tracked by the report saw a decline in the number of deals when comparing the two quarters.

Although the number of deals in the business/consumer/retail sector saw the largest decline of any industry tracked by the report (down to two deals during first quarter 2007 from seven deals during first quarter 2006), the value of the deals was up $2.5 million, making it the only industry sector to see a monetary increase during the first quarter 2007.

Nationally, the report showed the deal count reached 584 for the quarter, down by 31 from the first quarter of 2006.

The notable trends for the nation during the first quarter included a significant level of investors financing more first-round deals and dramatically increasing investments in life sciences. The health care industry saw the highest investment level during first quarter 2007, $2.88 billion.

Sarah Colwell covers banking and finance for the Colorado Springs Business Journal.Colorado Springs-based Air Academy Federal Credit Union has merged with Independent Group Credit Union.

The merger brings the credit union’s assets to more than $303 million, and membership to more than 45,000.

Independent Group Credit Union’s office at 705 N. Nevada Ave. will take on the Air Academy Federal Credit Union name, but remain staffed with Independent Group’s employees.

“In AAFCU, we found a merger candidate that closely mirrors our mission, vision and goals, said Independent Group President and CEO Jim Gillespie. “We are confident they will provide the best possible financial services to members.”

IGCU customers can no longer conduct transactions using IGCU Visa credit cards, and all outstanding balances on the cards will be converted to a signature loan with Air Academy Federal Credit Union at the same rate.

Customers must qualify for Air Academy Federal Credit Union credit cards. Customers that had a Home Equity Line of Credit with Independent Group Credit Union may qualify for a line of credit with a lower percentage rate with Air Academy Federal Credit Union.

Independent Group was chartered in 1950 as Interstate Gas Credit Union by employees of Colorado Interstate Gas.

Air Academy Federal Credit Union also is beginning construction on its newest branch at the corner of Union and Academy boulevards, in the northeast corner of the Safeway parking lot. The branch is scheduled to open in early fall, bringing the number of local Air Academy Federal Credit Union branches to 12.

New Wells Fargo branch on the horizon

Wells Fargo plans to open a new branch in Fountain during the next 12 months, said Regional President Gene Sullivan.

The company is waiting for the arrival of additional troops from the 4th Infantry Division from Fort Hood, Texas, before building will begin.

The bank, which has 24 branches in the Pikes Peak region, also is considering opening a branch in the northeast Powers Boulevard corridor, Sullivan said.

Charles Schwab hits record

The Charles Schwab Corp.’s net income for the quarter ended March 2007 was $273 million, a $30 million increase compared to the first quarter 2006.

An additional $17.8 billion in net new assets that was associated with the acquisition of The 401(k) Co. helped total client assets rise by 16 percent year-over-year for a record $1.31 trillion.

Schwab also expanded its offerings for newly independent advisers through a partnership with Cambridge Investment Research to house both fee- and commission-based assets. The company also introduced start-up financing, as well as expanded partnerships.

Using green to be green

Wells Fargo & Co. is offering clean, renewable energy reward options to its credit and check cardholders.

The bank says it is the first financial institution to do so.

Through Wells Fargo rewards programs, consumer and business credit card and check card customers can redeem reward points to support renewable energy projects and receive certificates for their donations.

Cardholders who are enrolled in one of the optional rewards programs can earn points for nearly every purchase they make. For 5,000 points, cardholders can support 6,000 kilowatt hours of green power, the equivalent to the clean air benefits of three acres of pine forest storing carbon for one year.

For 10,000 points, cardholders can support the development of enough green power to offset the more than seven tons of greenhouse gas emissions — the emissions from typical residential electricity use for a year, based on average consumption rates.

In 2006, Wells Fargo was named the largest purchaser of renewable energy in the United States according to the Environmental Protection Agency’s Green Power Partnership program.

Venture capital investment in Colorado down in 1Q

Venture capital investments in Colorado during the first quarter 2007 were down more than $7 million to $106.05 million, according to the Quarterly Venture Capital Report released by the Dow Jones VentureOne and Ernst & Young LLP.

Nationally, venture capital investments in U.S. companies increased 8 percent during the first quarter of 2007 compared to the same period in 2006 to reach $6.96 billion, according to the report.

In Colorado, the number of deals reached for the quarter was eight, down from the 18 deals reached during the first quarter 2006. Every industry sector tracked by the report saw a decline in the number of deals when comparing the two quarters.

Although the number of deals in the business/consumer/retail sector saw the largest decline of any industry tracked by the report (down to two deals during first quarter 2007 from seven deals during first quarter 2006), the value of the deals was up $2.5 million, making it the only industry sector to see a monetary increase during the first quarter 2007.

Nationally, the report showed the deal count reached 584 for the quarter, down by 31 from the first quarter of 2006.

The notable trends for the nation during the first quarter included a significant level of investors financing more first-round deals and dramatically increasing investments in life sciences. The health care industry saw the highest investment level during first quarter 2007, $2.88 billion.

Sarah Colwell covers banking and finance for the Colorado Springs Business Journal.