In A Major Development, M&F Bancorp Gains $76 Million from U.S. Treasury

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Marking a major capital infusion, M&F Bancorp Inc. will get $76 million from the U.S. Treasury that will help boost the bank’s lending efforts.

Calling itself the nation’s second-oldest African American-owned bank, the parent of M&F Bank stated the investment is expected to increase its capital to over $117 million.

The investment is vital as Black banks need to raise more capital but don’t have access to public markets like mainstream banks.

The money for the Durham, N.C.-based bank comes from the Treasury Department’s Emergency Capital Investment Program (ECIP). The U.S. Department of the Treasury will invest up to $9 billion in depository community development financial institutions (CDFIs) and minority depository institutions (MDIs).

Its goal is to offer small and minority-owned firms and consumers in low-income and underserved communities financial products.

M&F Bank reported in a news release that the investment shows the franchise’s strength, the health and soundness of the company, and its abilities to positively impact disadvantaged communities within its markets. The ECIP supports access to capital in communities traditionally excluded from the financial system and hit the hardest during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The funding is expected to provide loans for small businesses, minority-owned businesses, and consumers across North Carolina. With $373.2 million in assets as of Sept. 30, 2021, M&F Bank reports it is the nation’s eighth-largest African American-owned financial institution.

M&F Bank is on the BE Banks list.

“We are kicking off the new year with unprecedented opportunities for continued growth and investment thanks to these additional funds,” stated James H. Sills, III, M&F Bank’s president and CEO.

“This investment will allow us to build on our recent successes by providing even more ways for us to support small businesses in our community.”

M&F Bank added that the investment would allow it to continue implementing technology enhancements, providing more lending capacity in additional communities, and building relationships with financial partners to offer more services. The bank plans to provide more robust financial literacy platforms to the communities it serves.

In general, many Black-owned banks in America face challenges and need large-scale support to help keep their doors open. Figures show there were just 20 banks in America as of the third quarter of 2021, per the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. That number was down from a sturdy 48 in 2001.