Killer Mike, former Atlanta mayor Andrew Young, and Bounce TV founder Ryan Glover launch a digital bank
A group of Black Atlanta business people, politicians, and entertainers - including former Atlanta Mayor Andrew Young, entertainer Michael Render (better known as Killer Mike), and Bounce TV founder Ryan Glover - have launched a new digital bank called, which focuses on developing and promoting local communities and promoting Black and Latin American entrepreneurs and small businesses.
The digital bank came to Greenwood as a tribute to the thriving business community of Tulsa, Okla., Known as Black Wall Street, which was destroyed by white rioters in 1921. She has multiple roles designed to promote social causes and organizations for the Black and Latinx community.
Every time Greenwood signs up with the bank, Greenwood donates five free meals to an organization that addresses food insecurity. And every time a customer uses a Greenwood debit card, the bank donates to either the United Negro College Fund, Goodr (an organization that deals with food insecurity), or the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.
In addition, the bank grants a monthly grant of $ 10,000 to an owner of a black or Latin American small business who uses the company's financial services.
For Render, the decision to open a new digital bank alongside Young and Glover was a way to connect the established, centuries-old black business world of Atlanta with the technologies that are redefining wealth and creating new opportunities in the 21st century. It was also a way to equip a new generation with financial instruments that could empower rather than undermine them.
"What I've learned about capitalism is that you either participate in it or become a victim of it," said Render. "The ultimate protest is to focus your dollar like a weapon."
Young, who is also the US Ambassador to the United Nations, had seen digital banking technologies transform the social order in countries like India - reducing the power of payday lenders and enabling better economic access - and wanted to take advantage of these opportunities in communities in the US
Atlanta is the perfect home for a new black-owned digital bank. After the 1906 riots at the start of the Greenwood Massacre 15 years later destroyed Atlanta's bustling Black business district, the community was rebuilt with banks such as Citizen's Trust (founded in 1921) and Carver (founded in 1946) that served the city's black community.
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Rendon, a serial entrepreneur who owns a chain of barbershops called SWAG Shop, some real estate, and a restaurant along with rapper TI, said he wasn't just a founder of Greenwood, he was going to be a customer soon.
"Today a dollar circulates in the white church for 20 days but only six hours in the black church," Render said in a statement. "Also, a black person is twice as likely to be denied a mortgage as a white person. This." A lack of fairness in the financial system is why we created Greenwood. "
Greenwood will offer its customers a physical debit card as well as savings and checking accounts - along with all of the digital features they expect, including integration with Apple, Samsung and Google Pay, the ability to make peer-to-peer payments on the go, and the verification of deposits free use of ATMs in over 30,000 locations.
"It's no secret that traditional banks have failed the Black and Latinx communities," Glover said in a statement. "We needed to create a new financial platform that understands our history and future needs, a banking platform built by and for us, a platform that will help us build a stronger future for our communities. This is our time to take back control. Therefore." we created Greenwood, a modern banking business for culture. "
To run the bank, the founding team hired Aparicio Giddins, who is the company's President and Chief Technology Officer. David Tapscott, former CEO of Combs Enterprises and Green Dot, is serving as the company's chief marketing officer. Andrew "Bo" Young III, managing partner of Andrew Young Investment Group, and Paul Judge, co-founder of Pindrop and TechSquare Labs, both have seats on the company's board of directors.
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The timing for Greenwood's launch is right as it has said really, really stupid things about diversity in the financial services industry almost a century after Citizen's Trust started and days after the start of Charles Scharf, the executive director of Wells Fargo.
The company is backed by undisclosed angel investors with $ 3 million. The bank is currently taking deposits and, according to Rendon, hopes to usher in a new wave of entrepreneurial activity among young members of the Black and Latinx communities and their allies.
"Our work in the civil rights movement wasn't just about being able to sit at the counter. It was also about owning the restaurant," said Ambassador Young. “We have the skills, talent and energy to compete anywhere in the world, but to grow the economy it has to be based on the spirit of the universe, not the greed of the universe. Killer Mike, Ryan and me Greenwood start to continue this work to enable black and brown people to take advantage of economic opportunities. "
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