Square, Inc. to Invest $100 Million in Minority and Underserved Communities
Square, Inc. (NYSE: SQ) announced today that it intends to invest $100 million in support of minority and underserved communities, driven by the company’s purpose of economic empowerment and its ongoing commitment to racial equity. The investment constitutes three percent of Square’s cash and marketable securities as of the end of the second quarter of 2020. Square commits to financial support for these causes in the future.
According to the U.S. Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, minorities make up 32 percent of the population, yet minority business ownership represents only 18 percent of the population. The Urban Institute notes that there are fewer than two dozen Black-owned banks in the U.S. today, which provide customers access to financial capital and resources, and offer the opportunity to invest in the success of their community. Square believes it is critically important to ensure that access to financial services is not just reserved for those with privilege. With this investment, the company hopes to increase the speed and scale in which these organizations can help minority and underserved communities.
In 2019, Square began dedicating deposits to Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) and Minority Depository Institutions (MDIs) in communities around the country. These new investments are a continuation of the company's commitment to increasing access to financial services. By providing more capital to CDFIs and MDIs, the impacts can ripple across the communities they serve as more families buy their first homes and small businesses launch and evolve.
“Citizens Bank greatly appreciates its highly valuable and beneficial partnership with Square, Inc.,” said Sergio Ora, President and CEO of Citizens Bank, an organization in which Square made a small deposit earlier this year. “As the oldest continuously owned and operated African-American Bank in the United States and as a CDFI, Citizens Bank is very focused on establishing collaborative partnerships with organizations that are aligned with our long-standing commitment to provide superior financial services and financial education to the African-American community, as well as other underserved minority groups.”