Canada’s Meridian credit union has unveiled plans to establish a new national bank to serve customers living outside Ontario.

Meridian expects that the new entity, which will be known as Meridian Bank, to start offering online and mobile based banking services outside Ontario in 2018.

Meridian Bank will be owned by all Meridian members. Shares in the bank will not be publicly traded.

Meridian CEO Bill Maurin said: “We believe, and our research shows, that there is a clear desire in the marketplace for an innovative digital bank that offers a true full-service alternative to the big banks.

“With Meridian Bank, we want to bring the same Meridian experience to other Canadians, and unlike other digital offerings out there, we want to do that with the service offering breadth of a traditional full service retail financial institution.”

Founded in 2005, Meridian has 270,000 members in Ontario and $14bn in assets under management. The credit union has 81 branches across Ontario and has plans to open seven more by 2017.