INDIANAPOLIS (10/9/09)--The cooperative nature of Indiana's credit unions has created a milestone--they now offer the largest branch network in the state. By partnering with Credit Union Centers of Indiana (CUCI), the networked credit unions provide members access to 201 shared Indiana locations. That's more branches than any other financial institution doing business in the state, including large regional players JP Morgan Chase, PNC/National City and Fifth Third, said CUCI. "This really speaks to the power of credit unions, and the cooperation among Indiana credit union leaders," said CUCI President Karol Griffin of Teachers CU, South Bend. "By sharing resources, credit unions can keep costs down and offer a great convenience to their members while staying extremely competitive." The network enables even the smallest credit union to compete with the largest banks in the region on convenience and access, said Dan Davis, Credit Union Centers executive vice president and chief financial officer. CUCI also is expanding in Illinois. Paul Simons of Rantoul, Ill.-based Credit Union 1 noted the credit union has partnered with CUCI "to begin building the largest branch network in Illinois. Credit unions continue to be a great choice for consumers, and by banding together and building a large shared-branch network, it will make joining a local credit union the smart choice." Credit Union 1 operates 13 of the 64 shared-branch locations operating in Illinois. CUCI is part of Credit Union Service Centers, a national shared-branching network that offers access to more than 3,800 shared branch locations nationwide.