IH Mississippi Valley Credit Union's plans for a new headquarters on Moline's riverfront are an investment not only in the credit union's future growth but in its membership, its future work force and in the Quad-Cities, its CEO says.
"We're building out for our future success," IH Mississippi Valley's President and CEO Brian Laufenberg said in an interview Tuesday afternoon at the credit union's corporate office. Located at 2121 47th St., Moline, the facility once housed a Birley's clothing store and was a Salvation Army discount store before the credit union purchased it.
Credit union leaders said the existing facility was designed for 10-15 years of growth when IH Mississippi Valley moved into it in 2001.
"We've probably faced space issues for five years," Laufenberg said, adding that many departments have been moved to other locations over the years as part of "a Band-Aid fix." "We're bursting at the seams."
Once a new 80,000-square-foot headquarters is completed at 2500 River Drive, the credit union will be able to consolidate its corporate staff under one roof, said Matt Jefferson, IH Mississippi Valley's executive vice president. The $26 million headquarters will allow it to expand its Contact Center and Technology and Digital Service teams as well as unite its training, mortgage, investment, insurance and business services teams back at its headquarters.
The project's location near the Western Illinois University campus also is strategic, in that the credit union plans to partner with WIU to begin developing future employees. "We've been lucky (in finding talent). But everybody is hungry in the Quad-Cities for technological talent," Jefferson said.
Laufenberg said the project creates a "cool place" that will improve recruiting and retention as well as tie in with the mission of the Quad-Cities Chamber of Commerce's Q2030 regional strategy. He said as area businesses, like the credit union, plan for the future they "are trying to determine how do we plug into that vision."
He said they considered a number of potential sites, on both sides of the river, before choosing the Moline site near WIU. "We knew we wanted to develop a campus-like feel so our employees could get out on their breaks and take a walk around or unwind."
Jefferson said there also was a desire to be easily accessible from both the Illinois and Iowa sides of the river for the employees and the members.
The credit union's growth is driving the need for more space. With $1.2 billion in assets now, it has become the largest credit union in terms of assets in the Quad-City region as well as the sixth largest in the state of Illinois. Company-wide, it employs 350 people, of which about 150 work at the home office. The new building will accommodate 300 employees over the next 10 to 15 years.
Laufenberg said most the the credit union's growth has been organic and not from acquisitions. In fact, he said much of its growth came when the nation had its "financial meltdown of 2008-2009." "We've always had a high trust factor with our members," he said, adding "People were able to see the trust and value we provide and that really skyrocketed in 2008-2009."
The new four-story headquarters will be developed by Russell Construction, Davenport, with Leo A. Daly as the architect.
Laufenberg said construction is expected to begin in the spring, with a completion date of late 2019. The headquarters staff will move in early in 2020.