Achieva Credit Union headquartered in Dunedin, FL, announced this week that it has formed a national mergers and acquisitions consulting group to help credit unions buy banks.

Achieva Merger Services will assist credit unions and banks in identifying suitable partners, due diligence, pricing analysis, merger applications, regulatory advice, acquisition accounting and integration of operations.

The idea for the consulting group came after Achieva completed its acquisition of the $165 million Calusa Bank in 2015. At that time, according to the credit union, the Calusa deal was the first “whole bank” acquisition by a credit union. Before this, bank purchase transactions by credit unions were primarily structured as purchase and assumption of the majority of the bank’s assets and deposits, Achieva said.