Greenwood is an online-only financial technology company, not a bank, offering checking and savings accounts with no monthly or overdraft fees, early paycheck with direct deposit, and free access to over 100,000 Allpoint and MoneyPass network ATMs.
Greenwood is not a Black-owned bank, it's a fintech company offering a digital banking platform designed to meet the unique banking needs of Black and Latino individuals and businesses.
Black and Latino households tend to rank among the highest unbanked households despite the overall number of unbanked households being the lowest (4.5 percent) since 2009.
Greenwood was founded in 2020 by Civil Rights Leader Andrew J. Young, rapper Michael “Killer Mike” Render, Ryan Glover, and Dr. Paul Judge in the wake of the protests over the murder of George Floyd.
Yes, Greenwood is a legitimate digital banking platform that partners with Coastal Community Bank to provide checking and savings accounts that are FDIC-insured up to $250,000 per depositor. The status of Greenwood is the fintech continues to grow with a customer base of 500,000 members due to the May 2023 acquisition of Kinly, a fintech also aimed at growing wealth and providing financial services to Black customers.
Here’s a closer look at Greenwood’s account options.
Recently, Greenwood was in the news due to a lawsuit over the acquisition Atlanta's popular Black-owned private club, The Gathering Spot (TGS).
Greenwood acquired TGS for $50 million in cash and stock in April 2022. Since then, Ryan Wilson and T.K. Petersen, co-founders of The Gathering Spot sued Greenwood claiming they are entitled to $7.5 million in connection with the acquisition.
Greenwood, in response, refuted these allegations and countered by asserting that the TGS founders knowingly distorted the financial statements, resulting in a discrepancy exceeding $28 million.
The matter has since been settled with Wilson and Petersen holding an online town hall answering questions from concerned TGS members about the reasons for selling TGS to Greenwood.
Greenwood is best for customers who want to maximize savings account interest, are paid by direct deposit and don't deposit cash often.
However, if you want to support a Black-Owned bank, we recommend you review OneUnited Bank that's available online across the United States, or consider a Black-owned bank or Black credit union near you. These financial institutions are actual banks that can provide full-service, FDIC-insured or NCUA-insured banking where deposits go to directly to customers for funding mortgage, business and personal loans.
Greenwood is backed by Coastal Community Bank, a mainstream bank in the state of Washington. This partnership provides FDIC insurance which guarantees the safety of customers funds within the Greenwood framework.
But this also means Greenwood’s customers' deposits help provide banking services for Coastal Community Bank customers who may not necessarily be part of the Black and Latino demographic Greenwood purports to serve.
You have to understand that the primary purpose of a bank is to take in deposits then pool those deposits to provide mortgage, personal, business and sometimes student loans to customers.
Our top concerns with Greenwood:
When dollars circulate in a community, financial development is enhanced by funding real estate purchases, business development and other financial projects that build wealth for a community.