1990, KRS-1 wrap Regarding the combination of knowledge and entertainment, “name it edutainment / people sit down and look at my album / like a problem, they try to solve / they don’t know it only paves the way Hmm / A brighter positive day. “
Thirty years later, rapper, activist and entrepreneur Killer Mike (Michael Lender) aims to achieve the same results as his digital banking company, Greenwood, which is launching a new studio for creating financial education content. I am.
“KRS-One talked about’educating’people,” Render says. “People want to see content and are interested in being entertained, but people also want their education in a way that is easily absorbed. People who don’t know get to know and Those who already know know more, and everyone who knows it understands how little they really know and has the opportunity to be educated. “
Here’s the guideline behind the Atlanta-based Greenwood, named after the former Greenwood district of Tulsa, Oklahoma. Black wall street Before it was destroyed in the 1921 Tulsa race massacre. Founded in late 2020 by Lender, Ryan Glover, and former Atlanta Mayor Andrew Young, the company’s mission is to serve black and Latin communities, entrepreneurs, and small businesses.It can almost be raised $ 40 million From investors such as Truist Bank, JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America.
First, Greenwood’s content studio has partnered with a popular podcast. Earn your leisure Create a new show for black and Latino viewers. Focusing on the sports and entertainment business, he met pop culture and established himself as a Harvard Business School. Hosts RashadBilal and Troy Millings first heard about Greenwood in a podcast interview with Killer Mike and saw the move to branded content as a huge opportunity. “It’s very important because the way people consume information has changed,” they said in an email. “Because some audiences may not have access to traditional banks, this partnership will support the evolution to become a global resource for all business and finance.”
Other Greenwood shows include a daily podcast called Money movement Sponsored by Tanya Sam Atlanta real housewifeA documentary about the story of Black Wall Street. “Greenwood’s Greenbook” is an online directory of companies owned by black and Latino companies across the United States.
Although Greenwood is a digital bank, it offers traditional services such as checking accounts, savings accounts, loans and free ATM use. (Launching a complete banking platform Postponed until early 2022 Due to the huge demand, more than 500,000 people are on the waiting list. Content studios are a way to reach potential customers, as well as provide financial literacy tools to communities that were previously poorly serviced by banks.
Black loan applicants are rejected at an 80% higher rate than white applicants. According to 2020 data from the Mortgage Disclosure Act..And according to Boston Consulting GroupBlack and Latin households make up 32% of the US population, while 64% of households without a national bank account and 47% of households without a bank account. Check cashiers and payday loans are often predatory, but more common than major bank branches in low-income communities. Greenwood’s goal is to start changing these statistics.
“Economic empowerment needs to exist to stop racial inequality,” says Glover, a former record executive and founder of Bounce TV. “It starts with a recirculation of capital. We want to eliminate all predatory lending practices in banks. Frankly, we want to shut down all check cashing businesses. increase.”
According to Glover, banks are offering opportunities and the content includes resources on how to take advantage of those opportunities. “We want to not only help people learn how to fish, but also teach our community how to make fish,” he says.
Combining pop culture with entertainment to promote financial education is not a new idea. NBA star LeBron James uninterrupted Partnered with Chase in 2018 For the video and the final podcast series. But Greenwood is pitching himself as another kind of messenger.
“Often, working class people, newly immigrated people, and poorly raised people are financially threatened,” says Lender. “They are threatened by language and by the environment. Adding content eliminates much of that anxiety and fear by engaging with people who look like you.”
Over the last few years, we have seen the rise of so-called neobanks, or financial technology companies that offer digital banking services. According to PitchBookInvestors invested $ 44.4 billion in FinTech start-ups last year alone. Some are targeted to a specific audience, such as Step, a debit card startup for teens approved by TikTok star Charli D’Amelio, but in most cases it simplifies traditional banking operations for younger customers. The focus is on confusing.
Renders say Greenwood is a response to how the American system failed blacks. “Whether it’s financial, medical, or educational, distrust isn’t unreasonable, but it’s assured as it once was because we’re here to make some progress about it in my life. I don’t, “he says. “We live in the system, not under it, because we want to help people build the confidence they need to participate in this system.”
Killer Mike’s Digital Bank focuses on education and empowerment.
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