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International Remittances – Village Credit Union

Credit Union :Village Credit Union
Assets :$8,220,000
Address :601 E. Court Ave | Des Moines, IA 50309

Details :

Start Date:

  • Since 1967

User Qualifications:

  • Must be a member of Village Credit Union

Rates, Fees, and Terms:

  • Fees vary based on amount of transfer and location
  • Fees can be as low as $6
  • Fees average $7 and most transfers are to Mexico and South America Vendors/Systems/Technology Used :
  • The credit union uses the World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU) IRnet VIGO program

Target Market:

  • Those members that wish to transfer money to family members in their countries of origin

Marketing Strategy:

  • Word-of-mouth primarily

Program Results/Statistics :

  • In 2008, remittances were about one or two a month
  • In March 2009, the number of remittances had increased to 10-15 per month
  • For the last three months of 2009, remittances are numbering between 22-28 per month
  • Average transfer amount: $338

Member Benefits:

  • Other credit unions and wire transfer services charge a starting rate of $10; Village starts at $6

Additional Information:

Enrique Cruz-Garcia believes the dramatic increase in the credit union’s international remittance program came as the credit union was strengthening its Hispanic outreach efforts by accepting Individual Tax Identification Numbers (ITINs) for savings and loan products. The credit union also accepts the matricula consular card as a form of ID. Word spread through the Hispanic community that people without social security numbers could open accounts and qualify for loans with appropriate credit histories. (See Reaching Immigrants/Hispanic Initiative – Village Credit Union for additional information regarding this credit union’s outreach efforts.)

As a result of these initiatives, the credit union increased its percentage of Hispanic members from three percent a year ago to nine percent overall the end of 2009.