The American Bankers Association (ABA) and the National Bankers Association (NBA) have entered into a strategic partnership to “promote the health and well-being of minority depository institutions”, the two organizations announced today.
The NBA, which has represented minority-focused banks and financial services companies since 1927, and the ABA said they would work together on policy coordination, training, and education programs among other areas.
The organizations also plan to enhance participation in the US Treasury Department’s Mentor-Protégé program for minority depository institutions.
“The National Bankers Association has a long and rich history of serving minority banks, and we are honored to strengthen our ties with NBA at this important moment for our industry,” said ABA president and CEO Rob Nichols.
“This strategic partnership will allow our organizations to work together to achieve our shared and important goal of promoting the advancement and growth of minority banking institutions.”
Kenneth Kelly, chairman of the NBA, added: “The National Bankers Association has been the voice of minority banking since 1927. This partnership will enable current NBA members and those who join us in the future to fully engage in ABA’s industry-leading products and services while putting more focus on minority banking needs.
“This effort will be mutually beneficial to both organizations and the industry. We are pleased to join together with ABA to advance the work of minority depository institutions to help ensure that every community in the country has access to modern banking services.”
The ABA is also encouraging its members to join the NBA as affiliate members.
Earlier this month the NBA set out a list of measures for US policymakers to consider to ensure minority banks and financial services companies were fully included within support packages aimed at helping companies ride out the COVID-19 pandemic.
Among its recommendations were for the Small Business Administration (SBA) – which is overseeing the $660 billion Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) – to proactively incorporate minority and community financial companies into its lending programs.
“In a time of crisis where the pace at which relief is extended is paramount and the SBA could easily be overwhelmed, mission-oriented financial institutions… should be force multipliers for the SBA in helping them expand their reach to diverse entrepreneurs and non-profit institutions hta tservice the credit needs of [low and middle income] communities and communities of color,” the NBA stated.
Last week, the NBA announced a partnership with Combs Enterprises, owned by rapper and entrepreneur Sean Combs, to connect its members with OurFairShare.com, an online platform Combs helped set up to improve access to PPP loans for minority-led businesses.
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