One of the co-founders of Greenwood, Killer Mike has become one of the faces of Black banking, the #bankblack movement and push for financial empowerment in communities of color. An Atlanta based rapper, entrepreneur and financial activist, Killer Mike is now a leading voice of the Black banking conversation with the goal of empowering Black and Brown communities economically.
Killer Mike’s activism isn’t new and his music has allowed him to discuss a wide range of issues impacting Black and Brown communities. Killer Mike’s candor and passion are a driving force behind the projects that he says “yes” to and that passion has helped get Greenwood in front of the people that he’s trying to serve with this project.
Greenwood is the result of his passion for financial empowerment. Killer Mike recognized that African-Americans would be unable to grow wealth without access to financial institutions that would actually recognize the importance of the role of Black banking in building wealth.
Banking is at the heart of the majority of financial decisions. Whether it is to open an account to save money for the long run, have access to a checking account for daily transactions or applying for a mortgage factor heavily in the development of wealth in most communities.
The #bankblack movement has 3 main components:
One of the most exciting aspects of the #bankblack movement is how social media has been leveraged to increase awareness of the importance of Black banks in building wealth. In order to build wealth that includes homeownership access to lending is at the heart of growing Black wealth. Homeownership plays a significant role in building long-term wealth.
The Urban Institute found that Black ownership gains have been completely lost since the 2000s. The #bankblack movement also seeks to educate and navigate around the following financial roadblocks.
If you’re searching for more details on the history of Black banking, then the following book is a helpful guide “The Color of Money Black Banks and the Racial Wealth Gap” by Mehrsa Baradaran. This book examines the historical role of Black banking in building wealth and how political policies were created to subvert the growth of wealth in Black communities.
Killer Mike recognized that communities were being underserved in banking and that numerous lending and credit decisions were being impacted by implicit bias. Greenwood recognized that bias and looked to provide better access to financial tools with that in mind.
In a recent video, CNN Video Killer Mike makes the observation that many lenders have a lack of understanding of how cash flows in Black communities. This was based on understanding the role of different businesses within the Black community such as the barbershop.
Killer Mike’s passion for financial empowerment is important because he is relatable in a way that many people who talk about money are not. His experience as an entrepreneur also has given him insight into gaps in access to banking products that people of color may need but aren’t aware of.
Killer Mike is clearly onto something. The 100th anniversary of the Tulsa Race Massacre was on May 21, 2021. For many people, the discovery of numerous economically driven race massacres was surprising information.
The current conversation about building Black and Brown finances is deeply entrenched in this recently remembered history. Will technology become the driving force of a financial renaissance spearheaded by innovative thought leaders such as Killer Mike?
Uniquely positioned in Atlanta, GA arguably the heart of African-American entrepreneurship, creativity and money. It’s clear that Killer Mike and his co-founders are on to something big. Having raised over $40 million and with 100,000’s of future users waiting for Greenwood to go “live” it’s clear that Killer Mike and his co founders will continue to be a part of the conversation around empowering people of color with money and the need for inclusion in money spaces.
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