Among the many banks in Canada, Desjardin Group or Mouvement des Caisses Desjardin in French is the largest association of credit unions in North America.
Desjardin Group was founded in 1900 in Lévis Québec by Alphonse Desjardin.
It is mostly located in Québec, however it can be found in Ontario, Manitoba, and New Brunswick.
Desjardin Group is comprised of 536 local caisses populaires, which serve over 5.8 million members. The entire system is grouped into 11 regional federations.
In 2008 we saw the total assets at Desjardin Group reach $151.9 billion (CAD) in 2008, thus making it the 6th largest financial institution in Canada and the largest financial institution in Québec, ahead of National Bank of Canada.
Now you might be wondering how come the National Bank of Canada is included in the “Big Six”? The answer to that is because the banks in the “Big Six” are listed in order of market capitalization on the TSX. Also, Desjardin Group is now the 7th largest financial institution Canada, as you read above, the data was from 2008.
Desjardin Group has over 42,000 employees who serve more than 5.8 million members. Among this number, there are about 400,000 companies.
Now out of the 42,000 employees, there are around 6,300 elected offices who manage assets of 152.3 Billion USD for an asset of 9.9 billion USD.
In Ontario and Quebec members are served by 512 cases and 883 service centers.
Desjardin Group type of fund is a credit union. A credit union is a cooperative that brings together the citizens of the same geographic area. Therefore, the vast majority of Quebecers are member of Caisse Desjardin.
Desjardin Group has over 20 subsidiaries, which ranges from insurance services, real estate, venture capital funds, and brokerage services.
Insurance services include Desjardin Financial Security and Desjardin General Insurance. For real estate we see Place Desjardin, while venture capital funds are in Desjardin Venture Capital. Brokerage services are in Desjardin Securities.
The Desjardin Group is active in over 50 developing countries, through one of its subsidiaries, Développment international Desjardin. This subsidiary provides technical assistance programs and various investments.
Desjardin Group offers a variety of products and services for both personal and business clients. You can find procducts such as Visa Desjardin credit cards to Home Insurance. Needless to say, the products offered by Desjardin Group are in high numbers.
Among their products, I would like to note on their low interest Visa card, the Modulo Gold. It is the country’s lowest annual fixed rate Visa credit card, with an interest rate of 9.9%. This is a fixed rate; therefore it will not change at any point in time. It is great for people who carry a balance on their credit card.
Now Desjardin Group is great, I must say one last point. I made a call to one day inquiring about a credit card, however from what I found, if you do not speak French, it is somewhat hard to communicate with the representatives. Seeing as Desjardin Group has expanded across North America, and making its way throughout the world, they might need to consider having more fluent English speakers on staff. The representative could speak English, however there was a small barrier which made it hard for them to understand what I was asking for.
Other than that, Desjardin Group is a great bank. There is not much more to be said except if you are interested in great credit cards and other banking services, you might want to consider Desjardin Group as your choice.