The Importance of Black-Owned Banks

Adelphi Bank is the first Black-owned bank to open in the U.S. in 20 years. Its founders want to help Black Americans build wealth.

Adelphi Bank co-founders Jordan Miller, Kamran Haydar and Kevin Boyce, from left to right. (Photo courtesy of Adelphi Bank)

The facade of the original Adelphi Building Loan & Savings is preserved with a newly minted Adelphi Bank in Columbus, Ohio. Adelphi is the first Black-owned bank to open in the U.S. in 20 years and it stands where there was once a thriving Black commercial corridor. 

In this episode of the podcast, Next City’s Senior Economic Justice Correspondent Oscar Perry Abello shares how Black-owned banks directly impact wealth building. There are more than 4,300 community banks across the country, but only 20 of them are Black-owned. These disparities also show up in how wealth is distributed. For example, white Americans hold 84% of total U.S. wealth while Black Americans, who make up 13% of the country’s population, hold 4% of the wealth, according to an analysis from the Hamilton Project.

Adelphi’s founders raised nearly $25 million from 75 investors. We speak with Kevin Boyce, one of the bank’s founders, about the moment when a business partner suggested he start a bank, the racial wealth gap and how the bank is measuring success in serving its community.

Measuring success changes over time, says Boyce, but in 2023, the markers included growing its assets in a way that benefits its customers.

“Have we moved the needle in providing access to capital for entrepreneurs? Have we been able to have an impact on homeownership?” Boyce says. “All of those things are measuring sticks. They’re not the end-all-be-all. Not any one of them are things that determine our success. But the collective mosaic of all those things will give us some indication if we’re heading in the right direction.”

To learn more about the importance of Black banks and their connection to wealth building, listen to this episode below or subscribe to the Next City podcast on Apple, Spotify or Goodpods.

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