OneUnited, the largest Black owned bank in the U.S. announced Wednesday that it has achieved the over 100,000 customers milestone. The bank attributed the success to its social justice activism and investments in its technology platform.
“Our customer base continues to grow rapidly, and we have expanded access and now have over 100,000 locations to better meet their needs. Importantly, we’re on our way to fulfilling Black America’s long-held dream of organizing our spending power to create social and economic equality in our society,” said Teri Williams, the bank’s President & COO.
The bank’s social activism started in 2016 following the murders of two Black men, Philando
Castille and Alton Sterling, when rapper and activist Killer Mike urged Black Americans to move their money to Black owned banks. The he hashtag #BankBlack quickly trended and money started flowing to OneUnited. Another surge of deposits followed after Minneapolis police killed George Floyd this summer. Floyd’s murder saw 10,000 new customers open accounts at OneUnited.
The shift to digital banking has also been a plus for the bank as more of Black America is comfortable with the shift. To that end, the bank announced that to accommodate its rapid growth it is introducing a new service called “Cash to Your Card” which will give its customers access to an “additional 90,000+ locations” which will allow it to service customers nationwide, including access for the customers to over 30,000 surcharge free ATMs.
Not since the founding of St. Luke Penny Savings Bank in Richmond, Va., in 1903 by Maggie Lena Walker has a Black owned bank reached this milestone. Maggie Lena Walker was the first Black woman and first woman bank president in the United States.