JPMorgan Chase Invests In Carver State Bank

Robert James, II - President & CEO of Carver CDE
Robert James, II – President & CEO of Carver CDE

JPMorgan Chase today announced it has increased its investment in Minority Depository Institutions (MDI) and Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) to $100 million and has added ten new institutions among its investments, including Carver State Bank in Savannah. In addition to receiving an immediate capital investment, Carver State Bank will now offer J.P. Morgan’s money market funds to institutional investors through the firm’s Empower share class – which now has more than $5 billion in assets under management. Carver State’s customers will also gain access to more than 16,000 of the firm’s ATMs — beginning November 1, 2021, Chase will not charge a fee for participating MDI and CDFI customers who make a withdrawal at a Chase ATM.

Through this investment and new access to additional capital, Carver State intends to increase its lending to small businesses – particularly Black-owned businesses – in the region. Carver State expects to expand its small business lending by 50%.

“JPMorgan Chase is not only investing in us, but they are investing in the people and the city of Savannah and state of Georgia. This infusion of capital supports our mission to provide the building blocks to financial freedom, allowing us to scale up our lending towards homeownership, small business growth, and community development. It will also help us generate new opportunities for financial health and wealth for our consumer customers,” said Robert James, II, President of Carver Community Development Entity. “JPMorgan Chase has placed in us a trust that we can make a difference in reducing the racial wealth gap in Georgia by providing capital as well as a longterm, sustainable source of revenue generation through the Empowering Change money market fund.

We look forward to what our next 100 years will bring as we seek to grow our impact across the state.”

Carver State has served the community in Savannah since 1927, providing invaluable financial resources at times of great need and helping to fuel the financial goals of countless individuals and businesses. More recently, Carver State helped ensure that minority-owned small businesses in Savannah and across Georgia gained access to Paycheck Protection Program loans to sustain not only their business operations, but also the livelihood of their communities. Carver State was directly responsible for more than $14 million in PPP loans, with over 80% made to minority businesses. The investment from JPMorgan Chase will enable Carver State to increase its small business lending capacity even more.

“The role that MDIs and CDFIs play in strengthening our communities cannot be overstated. At JPMorgan Chase we believe that we can be a catalyst for positive change, not just through capital investments in trusted institutions like Carver State Bank, but also by fostering ongoing partnerships to benefit our shared communities,” said Mark Adams, Chase’s Consumer Banking Market Director for Georgia and North Florida. “Together, we can increase the availability of capital for diverse-owned small businesses and build more opportunities for financial health and wealth for customers in Savannah and throughout Georgia.”

MDIs and CDFIs like Carver State Bank provide vital financial services in communities that are often underserved. In order to provide necessary funding like mortgages and small business loans to underrepresented communities, many MDIs and CDFIs need additional capital themselves. JPMorgan Chase’s $100 million investment in the country’s MDIs and CDFIs is part of the firm’s five-year $30 billion racial equity commitment made nearly a year ago. These investments are focused on strengthening minority-owned and diverse-led financial institutions by providing additional access to capital, connections to institutional investors, and mentorship and training opportunities.

“It’s important that large financial institutions like JPMorgan Chase use their resources to uplift as many local communities as possible,” said Nicole Elam, President of the National Bankers Association. “I am pleased to learn that JPMorgan Chase’s original $40 million investment in MDIs and CDFI’s was just the tip of the iceberg. Their expanded $100 million investment in MDIs like Carver State and the access to an ongoing source of significant revenue generation takes JPMorgan Chase’s commitment to a new level that will drive significant change in the racial wealth gap and in our communities.”

Launched in February 2021, Empowering Change is a unique program, supported by Google, designed to allow MDIs and CDFIs to offer J.P. Morgan’s money market funds to institutional investors, boost their technological capabilities and develop new revenue through fund distribution. The Empower share class now has more than $5 billion in assets under management.

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