ATLANTA (4/29/09)--CO-OP’s Next Generation Network (NGN) “switch”--the technology that makes shared-branching transactions possible--has reached 1,000 participating credit union clients. NGN, the most-often used switch for shared-branching programs, delivers improved security, enhanced functionality and lower cost to participants, said CO-OP Shared Branching. In addition to shared branching, credit unions using NGN can access various electronic funds transfer (EFT) end-points, including CO-OP Fast Branch kiosks, CO-OP My Deposit (home deposit) and CO-OP Mobile (mobile banking). Through one streamlined connection, credit unions can offer members a variety of account-access solutions that best position credit unions to compete against banks. “The capabilities afforded to credit unions with NGN are numerous. It continues to provide an easy and efficient method for credit unions to access shared branching,” said Carroll Beach, president/chief operating officer of CO-OP Shared Branching. “Driven by member needs, it is now the platform for a host of innovative products that fortify credit unions’ financial distribution channels. The success of NGN is only possible through the strong cooperation of credit union participants.” Nearly 1,300 credit unions offer shared branching (with 1,000 using the NGN platform) through CO-OP Shared Branching. That represents more than 80% of all shared-branching participants. With more than 3,600 branch locations available for member use worldwide, shared branching ranks fourth in the nation in terms of branches among financial institutions, behind Wells Fargo/Wachovia, Bank of America and Chase/Washington Mutual.