Spotlight On ... Desjardins

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Desjardins Ontario Credit Union - proudly supporting the financial wellbeing of communities

Released: Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Welland, ON – "Spotlight On" looks into Welland's businesses, providing a glimpse into what makes them a staple within the community. This month's Spotlight is on Desjardins Ontario Credit Union.

Desjardins serves 130,000 active members in the private, commercial, real estate and agricultural sectors. This strong, high-performing organization, with its rich and diverse expertise, has 650 employees across 51 branches, making them a major employer in Ontario. With a business volume of more than $17.1 billion and total assets exceeding $8.5 billion, this new credit union ranks 2nd among Ontario caisses populaires and credit unions.

City of Welland has been home to Desjardins for over 70 years. With humble beginnings, the caisse was initially located in a church basement when it opened on Empire Street in 1949. This soon paved the way for establishing other caisses across the French-speaking communities of the Niagara Region.

Ontario is full of economic opportunities offering a salary above the national average, making the province a rich market for retail banking. However, competition is also very high, especially with the 5 major Canadian banks and the largest concentration of credit unions in the country. In this context the decision was made to regroup the 11 Ontario caisses populaires and its Federation. As a result, Desjardins Ontario Credit Union was created on January 1, 2020.

By pooling strengths and resources, the company can achieve greater economic and social vitality, benefitting the Ontario communities in which they operate. During the first quarter of 2020, policies and processes were harmonized. With the arrival of the pandemic, the management team adapted to the new circumstances and significant growth was achieved in 2020.

To satisfy the needs of their diverse members, Desjardins boasts a range of services including:

  • Personal and commercial banking services
  • Credit cards, loans and lines of credit
  • Savings and investment
  • Wealth management
  • Business services
  • Ontario Signature Service
  • Brokerage service

As a socio-economic leader, Desjardins actively supports the economic vitality and wellbeing of the community through donations, sponsorships and the Community Development Fund (CDF). In 2020 they generously provided $1,294,053 to support an abundance of projects through the Community Development Fund, the GoodSpark Fund, the Momentum Fund, donations and sponsorships.

Alphonse Desjardins, founder of the credit union, built the business around the belief that “a credit union is above all else, an association of people, not of dollars.” We look forward to watching the success of Desjardins Ontario Credit Union as they practice this mindset and strive to make it a reality.


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  • Type of Business: Financial Services
  • Started in Welland: 1949
  • Number of Employees: 650