CNote Expands Access to Capital for Community Financial Institutions With $25M from Apple

CNote, an Oakland-based fintech, announced that Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) will use the CNote platform “to deploy $25 million into underserved communities across the country.”

Apple‘s $25 million commitment is part of its broader Racial Equity and Justice Initiative, an effort “to address systemic racism in America and expand opportunities for communities of color.”

The new funding builds on Apple’s previously announced commitments “to expand economic empowerment and support entrepreneurs of color.”

Lisa Jackson, Apple’s vice president of Environment, Policy and Social Initiatives, stated:

“We’re committed to helping ensure that everyone has access to the opportunity to pursue their dreams and create our shared future. By working with CNote to get funds directly to historically under-resourced communities through their local financial institutions, we can support equity, entrepreneurship and access.”

Catherine Berman, CEO of CNote, added:

“Corporations have an enormous opportunity to help communities across the U.S. thrive by changing the way they manage their cash reserves, and we’re excited to see Apple at the forefront of this emerging trend. Through our platform, we have already started moving Apple deposits into low-income communities and communities of color.”

Initial deposits are already “at work in communities.”

CNote has deployed an initial round of Apple deposits to mission-driven financial institutions, “including ANECA Federal Credit Union in Louisiana; Bank of Cherokee County in Oklahoma; Carver State Bank in Georgia; Education Credit Union in Texas; First Southwest Bank in Colorado; Hope Credit Union, which serves Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee; Kaua’i Federal Credit Union in Hawai’i; Latino Community Credit Union in North Carolina; Legacy Bank in Missouri; Optus Bank in South Carolina; Self-Help Federal Credit Union, with locations in California, Illinois, Washington and Wisconsin; and VCC Bank in Virginia.”

Susannah Plumb Scott, executive vice president at Bank of Cherokee County, said:

“Partnerships like the one we have with CNote and Apple are essential to our efforts to expand access to capital, as well as to financial products and services, in a historically underserved market.”

The bank, formed in 1907 by “a group of prominent Cherokee Nation members, invests 95% of deposits back into Cherokee County.”

Eric Jenkins, president and CEO of Education Credit Union, founded by Amarillo schoolteachers in 1935, said deposits like Apple’s “allow ECU to serve more consumers and meet a broader range of needs.”

CNote’s platform provides insured deposits “across a network of vetted mission-driven financial institutions”

CNote’s platform fills “a gap for corporate and other institutional investors that want to support financially underserved communities across the country while generating returns on cash allocations.”

CNote moves client deposits into FDIC- and NCUA-insured accounts “across a wide network of mission-driven deposit institutions, including community development financial institutions (CDFIs), low-income designated (LID) credit unions, and minority depository institutions (MDIs).”

Funds committed through the CNote platform “increase the deposit base of mission-driven banks and credit unions that serve low- to moderate-income people as well as BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and people of color) communities.”

These types of deposits help “fuel affordable housing and small business loans and provide a just alternative to predatory lending.”

Apple and other CNote clients—including Mastercard, Patagonia, PayPal and Netflix—receive quarterly impact reports that “provide details on which institutions have received deposits and the populations benefiting from those investments.”

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