Georgia's Banks Are Becoming More Diverse | WABE 90.1 FM

Georgia's Banks Are Becoming More Diverse

May 5, 2017

Although Georgia is home to one of the most recognized African-American-owned banks in the country, the state’s banking landscape is becoming as diverse as its population.

According to this week’s Atlanta Business Chronicle, nearly 100 years ago, Citizens Trust Bank opened its doors on Auburn Avenue after the bank’s first chairman of the board, Herman E. Perry, tried to be fitted for a pair of socks at a white-owned store and was refused.

While Georgia’s minority-owned banks initially took flight to serve the African-American community, the need to serve other demographics has evolved as Georgia’s ethnic populations continue to shift and banking needs change.

In 1996, United Americas Bank was founded and became the first federally chartered bank in the metro area focused on serving the Latino market. It was acquired by State Bank in December 2010.

The formation of Minority Depository Institutions (MDIs) in Georgia continues to be a growing trend as six of the nine banks considered MDIs in the state have been chartered since 2000.

Phil Hudson covers the banking and music industries for Atlanta Business Chronicle.