DUBLIN, Ohio (10/14/08)--Credit unions need to cooperate to ensure their survival, according to FirstDay Financial CU, Dayton, Ohio. FirstDay recently completed a core data processor conversion with the help of AurGroup Financial CU, Fairfield; CINCO Family Financial Center CU, Cincinnati; and River Valley CU, Miamisburg. “In the spirit of cooperation, three [Ohio] credit unions jumped in to help and even lent their support staff to make the first week much less stressful,” Lee Spivey, FirstDay CEO, wrote in the Ohio Credit Union League’s eLumination newsletter (Sept. 24). “That is exactly the kind of cooperative spirit upon which the credit union movement was founded and is necessary to ensure long-term survival,” he added. Collaboration is a way for credit unions to “merge without merging,” Spivey said. “Credit unions all do many of the same things. We handle many of the same problems. We face many of the same issues each day. Why not join forces wherever we can? The power of size can be achieved by working together in an organized fashion and sharing expenses.” Credit unions face increased regulatory burdens, greater competition, new products and services and tighter margins. “If we cannot check our collective egos at the door and work together, it is quite likely that in 10 years, instead of 400 Ohio credit unions with an average asset base of $40 million, there will be only 50-100 with average assets of $500 million or more,” Spivey added. FirstDay has $75 million in assets.