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CO-OP Offers 'Shop Main Street' Rewards Program

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RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif. (4/30/13)--CO-OP Financial Services will offer "Shop Main Street" from RewardsNOW Inc., a card-based local merchant rewards program for credit unions, their members and businesses.

CO-OP and RewardsNOW work with participating credit unions to enroll local merchants in Shop Main Street. Whenever members use their credit union-issued debit or credit card at a participating local merchant, the merchant credits the member with bonus points, which are entered into their credit union loyalty program. Members may then redeem their earned points for local merchant gift cards or other redemption options.

"For credit unions, it means closer ties with their members, increased income and enhanced commercial relationships with local merchants," said Stan Hollen, CO-OP Financial Services president/CEO.

"For merchants, it provides the opportunity to build repeat-customer business; and for credit union members, it means good deals at local establishments and a more useful rewards program from their credit union," said Hollen. "It all adds up to creating a sense of community, with a program that keeps local dollars in the local economy."

The program provides credit unions with additional income opportunities through increased card use and interchange revenue from members everyday purchases, and through a rebate on every transaction amount, paid by the merchant, to offset the cost of the bonus points.

Shop Main Street can be added to the credit union's CO-OP Member Rewards loyalty program or to the standalone CO-OP Merchant Funded Rewards program, in which credit union members earn points for online purchases at national retailers.

Credit union members participating in the rewards program receive communications that include a welcome e-mail, program activity confirmations and periodic marketing messages highlighting special offers from merchants. Members can also view their Shop Main Street activity via the credit union's loyalty program website.

Andrews, US Senate FCUs Join LendKey

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NEW YORK (4/30/13)--LendKey (formerly Fynanz), a New York-based cloud-based lending technology company, has added U.S. Senate FCU and Andrews FCU to its list of lending partners.

LendKey is a CUNA Strategic Service provider.

The credit unions will use the LendKey custom platform to power their private student loan and private student loan consolidation programs.

Alexandria, Va.-based U.S. Senate FCU, with $575 million in assets, serves more than 30,000 members who are employees of the U.S. Senate and U.S. Supreme Court, among other government entities and private companies and organizations.

"We wanted a lending solution that was built to fit the individual needs of our membership base in time for the upcoming academic year," said Susan Enis, U.S. Senate FCU president/CEO. "LendKey, with its ability to offer a three-week implementation period, was an easy choice for our credit union."

Suitland, Md.-based Andrews FCU, with $970 million in assets, serves more than 100,000 members at military bases and installations around the world, and more than 200 additional employer groups throughout Maryland and New Jersey.

"The cuStudentLoans program provides us the perfect opportunity to enter a new asset class and grow Gen-Y membership while still taking advantage of the risk mitigation benefits of an experienced lending network," said Russ McAtee, Andrews FCU chief operating officer.