A Traverse City-based credit union plans to enter the West Michigan market with the planned opening of three branches in Holland, Zeeland and Muskegon, along with several more in the years ahead.
Each of the new offices for 4Front Credit Union will open in former TCF Bank branches that were among dozens in Michigan that closed last year following TCF’s acquisition by Huntington Bancshares Inc.
The new locations will extend 4Front Credit Union’s market beyond the northwestern Lower Peninsula, where it has 15 offices. The credit union wants to expand further in West Michigan beyond the three planned lakeshore locations and could have up to 10 branches in the region within five years, CEO Andy Kempf told MiBiz.
“We know that the Grand Rapids market and that whole region is growing, and we’d like to be part of that. We think we have a product and service the market would like,” Kempf said. “We like to go where the people are, we like to offer services, and we want to grow.”
The credit union hopes to open at least two of the new offices by the end of 2022, Kempf said. The new locations will go into former TCF branches at 177 N. River Ave. in Holland, 9581 Roley St. in Zeeland, and 177 Seminole Road in Muskegon.
4Front will begin advertising open positions within the next few weeks, starting with commercial and mortgage lenders, Kempf said.
Established in 1954, 4Front Credit Union has members statewide and ended 2021 with $896.2 million in total assets, total deposits of $810.5 million and 95,315 members, according to a financial report to the National Credit Union Administration. Loans totaled $599.4 million as of Dec. 31, including $83.1 million in commercial loans that grew 22.5 percent last year.
The credit union recorded $9.4 million in net income for 2021, according to the NCUA filing.
4Front’s new offices will feature video tellers to handle basic transactions and have staff for customers who need additional assistance. The credit union plans to begin recruiting staff in the third quarter.
The credit union already was looking in West Michigan for sites to open new branches prior to TCF merging into Huntington last year. 4Front had bids on properties to develop new branches when the former TCF branches became available, Kempf said.
“We actually tabled some of our buying property strategy and just went toward the Huntington ones. They are turnkey and they will probably get us in there a year earlier than it would have been normally,” he said.
As it plans renovations for the new locations, the credit union is already looking for property for additional branches in the West Michigan market, he said.