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Credit Union :North Island Financial
Assets :$1,500,000,000
Address :P.O. Box 85833 | Chula Vista, CA 92186
Start Date :April 2006

Rates, Fees, and Terms :

User Qualifications :

  • Both parties must open account
  • Account must be opened a minimum of 90 days prior to the wedding

Rates, Fees, and Terms :

  • Minimum opening balance: $200
  • Minimum to earn dividends: $200
  • No fees
  • No withdrawals permitted until wedding date or later; account remains locked if no wedding date is set
  • MatriMoney® announcement cards are provided to shower and wedding guests explaining the program
  • Guests depositing into the account receive a card to send/present to the couple

Vendors/Systems Used :

North Island CU holds the national copyright to the name MatriMoney® but allows other credit unions to use the name at no charge. Credit unions are required to file a letter with North Island prior to using the name.

Target Market :

Couples planning to marry that may prefer cash deposits in lieu of gifts.

Marketing Strategy :

North Island focuses its marketing efforts for this product on existing members. It has found that the majority of members with MatriMoney® accounts were existing members. It positions this product as a retention/relationship strategy.

Program Results/Statistics :

  • Open 1 to 2 accounts per week
  • Currently have about 50 accounts on the books
  • Average account balance is about $400, after which couples normally close the account or move the funds to other accounts after the wedding
  • Members who open the account have higher services per household than the general membership
  • 63% of those with MatriMoney® also have a credit union checking account and use online banking (which is how they check their gift-givers names)
  • Average age of account holder is 31 and has been a credit union member an average of 6 years
  • Almost a third of gift deposits are received via credit cards over the telephone

Member Benefits :

  • A wedding registry allows couples to receive cash gifts for what they really need and want, without having to ask for cash
  • Couples are provided with gift cards that can be included with shower or wedding invitations
  • Couples receive an account statement with contributors’ names from which they can send “thank you” notes

Additional Information :

North Island Credit Union piloted the MatriMoney® account in the fall of 2005 as one of Filene Research Institute’s I3 projects. Beth Small, Marketing Administrator for the credit union, states there is no “one way” to offer a MatriMoney® account. At North Island the account is a marketing variation of a regular share savings account; no new product was developed. “What enhances the product,” says Small, “is that we give the registering couples gift cards to include in their shower and wedding invitations to show they are registered at North Island Credit Union. We also show them how to link to our web site from their own wedding web site, if they have one. It’s an elegant way to let people know cash gifts are acceptable.”

Small also adds that the product has high acceptance by staff. “They love this product,” she says. “It also offers great PR. We’ve received some good press from the product.”

There are now at least 19 credit unions using the MatriMoney® product, according to a Filene report. It also noted that no two versions are alike among these credit unions. At North Island most MatriMoney® accounts are opened by existing members. Small noted that a rate bump or incentive offering is not necessary to make the account more appealing. “Couples just want the bridal registry cards to include in their invitations,” concludes Small.