Ontario, Calif.-based CU Direct late Tuesday said the company’s board of directors approved a 3 percent cash dividend to its credit union shareholders.

CU Direct, a developer of lending software technology to the credit union industry and home of the Lending 360 and CUDL brands, noted it was paying a dividend for the 13th consecutive year, a record for the company.

The company has grown from nine credit union shareholders in 1998 to 108 shareholders in 2017.

According to CU Direct, credit unions funded 1.8 million loans through the Lending 360 and CUDL platforms, generating a record $39 billion in credit union auto loans in 2017. The previous record was $32 billion in loans funded, set in 2016.

CU Direct credit unions have increased auto loans 100.8% since 2013, the company said.

As reported in Credit Union Journal last August, CU Direct’s credit union partners, as an aggregate, became the largest auto lender in the nation in 2017, experiencing 16.2 percent loan growth. That figure represented the second-highest loan origination growth rate among the top 10 lenders in the nation, according to data from AutoCount.

New clients on board

CU Direct said it signed new agreements with 71 credit unions in 2017. At year’s end 1,117 credit unions, serving 47.8 million members, were utilizing the company’s network of lending technology, including lending platforms CUDL and Lending 360, analytics and reporting company Lending Insights, auto-shopping tools known as AutoSMART, and retail lending products OnSpot Financing.

“We are pleased to once again provide a strong return on investment to our shareholders,” Tony Boutelle, president and CEO of CU Direct, said in a statement. “Credit unions continue to demonstrate their ability to compete with banks and win in the auto lending marketplace; we remain focused on delivering innovative lending technology that helps our credit union partners make more loans and create a better member experience.”

For more information, visit cudirect.com.

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