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Westminster Savings reports solid financial results in 2013

New Westminster, BC – April 23, 2014 – At its 70th annual general meeting on April 22, Westminster Savings Credit Union reported a year of relatively strong financial performance in 2013. The continuation of the low interest rate environment led to further compression of net interest income or margin, and had an impact on profitability for the year. Westminster Savings closed the year with pre-tax earnings of $12.6 million down from $16.2 million in 2012. Retained earnings grew by more than $17.5 million to $158.5 million, an increase of 12.4% from 2012. The credit union’s on-balance sheet assets grew by 4.0% to $2.4 billion, and member deposits increased 4.4% to $2.0 billion.

“Although 2013 was marred by persistently low interest rates and heightened regulatory and competitive pressures, Westminster Savings was successful in achieving positive results overall, including surpassing $3.0 billion in total assets under management for the first time in our nearly 70-year history,” said Bill Brown, chair of the Board of Directors. “Beyond our solid business performance, a key highlight for Westminster Savings was being identified as one of Canada’s Best 50 Employers for the second consecutive year.”

2013 was a productive year for the credit union. Westminster Savings launched Deposit Anywhere, a free app which allows members to deposit a cheque simply by taking a photo of it. At its launch last April, Westminster Savings was the first financial institution in Canada to offer this convenient and free service to its members. In addition, Westminster Savings expanded its wealth management and small business services and introduced six-day operations at all of its branches to better serve its members’ needs. Westminster Savings also took steps to round out its leadership team with the appointment of a new Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President, Human Resources and Corporate Secretary.

“We experienced another year of strong financial performance thanks to our ongoing focus of helping our members and customers achieve better balance, while managing our operations prudently and continuing to make the necessary investments to diversify and grow our business,” said President and CEO Gavin Toy. “In 2013, we are proud to have maintained our commitment towards our local communities by creating opportunities for and access to arts and active living programs and activities through our community investment program, Project Better Balance.”

In 2013, through Project Better Balance, Westminster Savings gave more than $175,000 to local charities through donations and grants from the Westminster Savings Foundation. It also invested directly more than $173,000 in various community sponsorships and activities and contributed $500,000 to the Westminster Savings Foundation bringing its total fund balance to more than $8.6 million and ensuring a reliable source of financial support for community investment activities going forward.

About Westminster Savings

Westminster Savings provides a full range of retail, commercial, leasing and wealth management solutions to residents across metropolitan Vancouver. Westminster Savings also offers a wide range of online and mobile banking services, access to global ATM networks and extended telephone service through its contact centre located in New Westminster. At more than $3.0 billion in assets under management, over 430 employees, and 55,000 members, Westminster Savings is amongst the largest credit unions in Canada. For more information, visit www.wscu.com.

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Judy Huang