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We are a credit card issuer dedicated to serving mid-sized financial institutions and their customers.

Coalition of Canada’s credit unions forms exclusive partnership with Collabria Financial

Five-year agreement cements Collabria’s position as exclusive credit card supplier

VANCOUVER, BC AND CALGARY, AB April 7, 2022 - Central 1 and Collabria Financial today announced that the National Credit Card Program (NCCP), a coalition of more than 180 credit unions across Canada, has signed an exclusive five-year agreement with Collabria Financial, cementing Collabria as their credit card supplier of choice. More than 99% of NCCP participants support the initiative to develop, grow and optimize credit card offerings to credit union members across Canada.

Credit unions participating in the agreement will benefit from a competitive, customized portfolio of credit card options including low-interest cards, travel cards, U.S. dollar cards, and premium reward offers. The new agreement highlights increased revenue for credit unions, along with extensive digital and modernization upgrades.

“In a constantly evolving marketplace, credit unions need to partner with companies who understand the unique needs across our ecosystem and deliver reliable, technology-forward solutions,” said Ken Shea, Chair, NCCP National Advisory Program. “With this five-year agreement, Collabria will continue to play an integral role in enabling NCCP credit unions to provide best in class credit card solutions to all of their members.”

“Throughout the planning and negotiation process, we have seen a unified commitment from all parties to strike an agreement focused on cardholder benefits and an improved user experience for both credit union employees and members,” said Dave Schurman, Chair, NCCP Negotiating Committee. “We appreciate the efforts all parties have made to engineer a successful agreement and are thankful to the many people who have been invested and involved in the process.”

“Credit cards are the most commonly used form of payment by Canadians—and during the pandemic, where online transactions have significantly grown, the need for modern, reliable, digital payment solutions is imperative,” said Jean-Marc Handfield, CEO, Collabria Financial. “We have listened to the credit unions and put a program in place to deliver long-term value to their members and communities.”

The new agreement takes effect January 1, 2023 and includes a phased rollout of upgrades for cardholders including high-quality cards, improved mobile and online experiences, as well as security and usability enhancements.

About the National Credit Card Program (NCCP)

The NCCP is a collaboration of 189 Canadian Credit Unions, formed in 2018 to deliver a suite of best-in-class retail and business credit card products and loyalty programs. The NCCP is governed by a National Advisory Committee of credit union executives, with the day-to-day administration of the program provided by Central 1.

About Collabria Financial

Collabria Financial offers a competitive and compelling credit card program on behalf of credit unions and mid-sized banks. By operating as a subsidiary of Desjardins Group, Collabria benefits from the strength and experience of one of Canada's oldest financial institutions, driven by its cooperative values for over 120 years. Collabria combines flexibility for financial institutions with the scale and expertise needed to deliver an increasingly complex product in a highly competitive market.

About Central 1

Central 1 cooperatively empowers credit unions and other financial institutions who deliver banking choice to Canadians. With assets of $13.4 billion as of December 31, 2021, Central 1 provides critical services at scale to enable a thriving credit union system. Central 1 collaborates with their clients, developing strategies, products, and services to support the financial well-being of their more than 5 million diverse customers in communities across Canada.

Media Contact

Serge Léger
Chief Marketing Officer
Collabria Financial
Ph: 403.283.1414
Email: serge.leger@collabriafinancial.com

Our Story

Collabria Financial was established in 2015 to fulfill a significant need in the Canadian credit card market – a credit card issuer dedicated to serving mid-sized financial institutions and their customers. With this gap in the market being identified, forward-thinking credit unions, including Desjardins, set forth to create Collabria.

From the beginning, when Collabria was just an idea, every aspect of our formation was designed to offer a competitive and compelling credit card program on behalf of mid-sized banks and credit unions. By operating as a subsidiary of Desjardins, we benefit from the strength and experience of one of Canada's oldest financial institutions, driven by its cooperative values for over 120 years, while separating the unique needs of B2B2C clients from Desjardins’ self-issued card portfolio.

Today, Collabria serves over 97% of all credit unions in Canada, Schedule I banks and other financial providers. Collabria combines flexibility for financial institutions with the scale and expertise needed to deliver an increasingly complex product in a highly competitive market.

Our Owners

Collabria’s unique ecosystem benefits from the partnership of Desjardins and Co-op Solutions. Both Desjardins and Co-op are cooperative financial institutions owned by their member organizations.

Desjardins Group is the largest cooperative financial group in North America and the fifth largest cooperative financial group in the world, with assets of $389.3 billion. In  2020 it was ranked as one of the world’s Top 100 Employers by Forbes magazine. To meet the diverse needs of its members and clients, Desjardins offers a full range of products and services to individuals and businesses through its extensive distribution network, online platforms and subsidiaries across Canada. Ranked among the world’s strongest banks according to The Banker magazine, Desjardins has one of the highest capital ratios and credit ratings in the industry.

Co-op Solutions is a global provider of technology and payments solutions for credit unions. Processing over 7 billion transactions annually, Co-op is one of North America's largest card processors.

Our Commitment To Social Responsibility

As a subsidiary of Desjardins, Collabria is backed by the strength of a collective group moving towards a more human economy and sustainable community development.

In order to meet the needs of our cardholders and clients, Collabria includes social, environmental, and governance issues in our strategic planning and is a key focus in the relationships with our partners.

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Our Leadership Team

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Jean-Marc Handfield
Chief Executive Officer

Jean-Marc is a dynamic, seasoned strategist with over 15 years of results-driven leadership in the Canadian credit union financial sector.

Prior to joining Collabria, Jean-Marc held a series of senior executive roles, including Vice President of Payment Solutions and Vice President of Community Member Service at Vancity.

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Nita Powers
Chief Client Experience Officer

Nita is a card program enthusiast who works to find the win-win relationship that delivers value to customers/members, generates revenue, and brings client strategies to life.

Nita’s payment industry experience includes both issuing and acquiring, loyalty programs, product management, emerging solutions, and includes both Canadian and international experiences including over a decade within Canada’s mid-market.

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Serge Léger
Chief Marketing Officer

Prior to joining Collabria, Serge was Vice President Marketing & Member Innovation at Prospera Credit Union. Serge brings 20+ years of broad financial services experience while working with large national and international banks in the areas of business planning & development, personal banking, wealth management, corporate strategy, finance and operations.

Chad Schultz
Chad Schultz
Chief Operating Officer

Chad is an energetic and effective leader, who believes that "good enough" is never good enough. Believer in people and their ability to achieve their potential through ensuring that well-being and integrity are supported by inspiration and curiosity.

Chad brings 15+ years of broad experience in financial services, telecommunications, and insurance. He excels in organizations that have a mandate to change and has the ability to bring structure and calm to chaotic situations, mobilizing people toward a common goal and facilitating success. He is passionate about the opportunities created through digital technologies, having expertise in launching credit card platforms, digital payments and related technologies.

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Chantal Lussier
Chief Financial Officer

Chantal has over 25 years of experience building and leading finance teams. She began her career with Desjardins and spent several years in finance and operating roles. Chantal has participated in the implementation of various projects and new activities.

Before working with Collabria, Chantal led a finance team in charge of the credit card activities for Desjardins. This has allowed her to develop an in-depth knowledge of the credit card business.

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Doug Macdonald
Chief Strategy Officer

For over two decades Doug has worked with Canada's financial services industry to make it more competitive. Doug brings the lessons learned working with global financial institutions, large domestic banks, payment networks and technology providers to our payments and mid-market banking industries.

Prior to joining Collabria, Doug served as a senior leader in Deloitte's strategy consulting practice and as a partner and credit union consulting leader at MNP, Canada's largest domestic professional services firm.

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Isabelle Clements
Organizational Development Strategist

Isabelle Clements is a seasoned creative, energetic and strength-based Organizational Development professional with over two decades of diverse and global Human Resources & Organizational Development experience. She has extensive consulting experience with Credit Unions and other values-based organizations, in addition to a solid corporate background as Senior Leader of the North American Learning and Development Team and Global HR Director of the Customer Support division of a global Technology Company. Isabelle has acquired significant Organizational Development experience in the context of Mergers and Acquisitions in both the Technology and Airline industries.

Claudia Jomphe
Claudia Jomphe
Chief Risk Officer

With a degree in finance and in financial planning, Claudia has been working in the banking industry for over 25 years. After holding various positions for different financial institutions, from business development to marketing, Claudia joined Desjardins in 2014 to contribute to various projects surrounding risk management, a field in which Claudia has accumulated over 15 years of experience.

Her mandate as Chief Risk Officer for Collabria is to ensure adequate risk governance and the proper functioning of risk measurement and monitoring systems for Collabria. A manager for over 12 years, Claudia enjoys building teams and contributing to the evolution and development of people.

Collabria Careers

Want to join a growing, entrepreneurial and client-focused team, backed by the strength of one of Canada's largest financial institutions?

Ready for your next challenge?

Collabria staff perform a number of critical roles including:

  • Marketing & Product
  • Relationship Management
  • Operations
  • Finance
  • Risk & Compliance

Collabria operates from coast to coast, with mobile relationship management teams in each region and business and operational centres in Vancouver, Calgary, Winnipeg, Toronto and Montreal. Many positions can be performed at any location in Canada.

Collabria staff receive a competitive compensation package, including participation in Desjardins' exceptional support and benefits.

Search for Openings

All open positions are posted via Desjardins' job board. To see what's available, search for "Collabria".

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