American Banker

GFA Federal Credit Union First to Fund Legalized Marijuana Industry in Massachusetts


GARDNER, MA (September 17, 2018) - GFA Federal Credit Union will become the first credit union to bank for the newly legalized marijuana industry in Massachusetts.

“When the Commonwealth legalized medicinal and recreational cannabis, we knew the multi-millions generated by this fast-growing industry would soon become a safety issue, if unbanked,” CEO Tina Sbrega said. “Our board of directors recognizes the need to provide banking services for the safety of our citizens in reducing the cash on the streets, and I applaud them for their vision and commitment to providing public safety.”

Read the entire article here.

Protecting Community Banks From Consolidation


NEW YORK, NY (February 22, 2018) - Consolidation in the banking industry may reap rewards for investors, but it also restricts access to financial services for many communities throughout the United States.

Community banks support many geographic areas underserved by larger banks; more than 16 million people, or one in three counties, rely exclusively on local banks and have no physical access to large banks, according to American Banker. Local banks fund over 60% of small business loans, while holding only 20% of all banking assets.

“Community banks are not only more highly capitalized than larger institutions and therefore better equipped for economic downturns, but their local focus and accountability make them distinctly pro-consumer. These local institutions operate a relationship-based business model that incentivizes customer service and stewardship... [they] reinvest their proceeds into the communities in which they operate, promoting economic growth that begins at the local level,” American Banker reports.

Read the entire article here. recognizes the value of trustworthy community lenders - our Responsible Finance Network includes 14,000 of them in all 50 states. We provide the transparent alternative to predatory online lenders by matching you with high-quality, low-cost financing. Our mission: Financial inclusion. Create your free Funding Profile to start matching today.

Establishing Credit History for Immigrants: Uncovering an Untapped Market


NEW YORK, NY (February 21, 2018) - Recent immigrants to the United States face an enormous hurdle to building a new life: a nonexistent credit history.

Credit cards, bank loans, cars and real estate all require a solid credit score, and yet immigrants arrive with a blank slate in the American credit score system, regardless of their financial history abroad.

“You could be a billionaire in Australia, come over here and try to apply for a credit card. You're probably going to get rejected if you have no credit footprint in this country,” says Lend Academy founder Peter Renton.

A number of FinTech companies have evolved to serve this overlooked market and maximize opportunities for foreigners to contribute to the American economy. Nova Credit estimates that 10 million immigrants in the past decade would be categorized as prime to super prime if their international credit records were accessible.

Read the entire article here.

Small businesses have the power to be a catalyst of transformation for our communities – and our economy. is committed to offering America's underserved communities access to low-cost, high-quality and transparent financing. Our common application and matchmaking software help connect individuals, businesses and nonprofits with our Responsible Finance Network™ of 14,000 community banks, credit unions and economic development organizations. Our mission: Financial inclusion. Click here to create your free Funding Profile.


Integrating FinTech and Community Banks


CHICAGO, IL (February 20, 2018) - Community lenders are increasingly finding success in blending the speed and efficiency of financial technology with the personal connection and attention of community banks, according to a new article in American Banker.

"Small-business owners typically want to do business with local financial institutions. At the same time, they don’t want to subject themselves to a longer and clunkier process,” Joel Pruis of Cornerstone Advisors says. Small business owners are “on the go and like to do things digitally, but they also like to have that face-to-face option as well.”

Chicago’s Marquette Bank successfully digitized its lending process and saw its credit memo creation time shorten by 25%.

Read the entire article here. is where FinTech and InfoTech intersect with small business lending: our platform provides access to a national network of 14,000 community lenders. Our cutting-edge matchmaking technology and Universal Application match you with the best financing and help you apply with ease. Our Funding Advocate team offers personal assistance, guiding you through the application process and connecting you with the right financing for your business. Our mission: Financial inclusion.Create your free Funding Profile here.

Is AI a Threat to Fair Lending?


NEW YORK, NY (September 14, 2017) excerpt via AMERICAN BANKER - "There are all sorts of legal and technical issues about how lending rules apply to the new breed of online lenders, but here’s a more fundamental one: How sure are they their automated technology is colorblind?

Even if a company has the best intentions of following fair-lending principles, it’s debatable whether the artificial intelligence engines that online lenders typically use —and that banks are just starting to deploy — are capable of making credit decisions without inadvertently lending in affluent sections and not in minority neighborhoods."

To read the entire article, read here.

Read about our Responsible Finance Network. Our mission: Financial inclusion. Create a Funding Navigator profile now.