LITTLE ROCK, AR--Former President Bill Clinton opened the state launch of Kiva Little Rock, the innovative Crowd Funding Platform at the Clinton Presidential Library. The reality is that 6 banks hold over 80% of all banking assets in America. More importantly, 50% of all loans are made from less than 12% of total banking assets. Kiva Zip is an innovative lending platform that combines micro-lending with the Internet Cloud.
In his public remarks, Bill Clinton explained Kiva Zip as a new innovation in the area of community development finance. He connected the new lending platform with Chicago's Shore Bank, the first Community Development Bank; to Southern Bank Corporation of Arkadelphia; and the Federal Empowerment Zones Program.
Justin Renfro, Kiva Representative, "It was a pleasure meeting everyone over the last month. I was looking to find 30 borrowers during the 3 and 1/2 weeks I was here in Arkansas. My team laughed at the idea, but soon after landing here I realized it was possible. In the end, we finished with 17 amazing trustees and 34 borrowers with a total loan volume of $236,000."
The fact is since the repeal of Glass-Steagall Act, the law that separated investment banking from commercial banking; Big Banks aren't in the business of making loans anymore. They are really hedge funds with access to the Federal Reserve window, financed by commercial bank deposits. It is the small to mid-sized banks, community banks and credit unions that are making all the loans to small-businesses and entrepreneurs.
Mayor Ronnie Conley, Cotton Plant AR, also endorsed the Kiva Zip program as a economic development strategy. "We have to support individual entrepreneurs and grow small-businesses here in the Delta. We can't afford to wait for large corporations to relocate in our backyard. Kiva Zip is helping us to do just that."
Mayor Earnest Nash, Gould AR, is participating in the Kiva Zip as an individual borrower and as a Trustee. He has convinced the City of Gould to be a Kiva Trustee as signature part of the City's Economic Development Program. "Kiva Zip is important because is combines cloud financing with micro-lending for business loans and entrepreneurs."
I am proud to be included in the first class of Kiva Zip borrowers in Arkansas. This is a historic occasion. My business is American Banner Books, which is an independent small press that specializes in publishes the real-life stories of courageous whistleblowers, told in their own words, written by the whistlebowers themselves. The first book release is "RACE, POWER & POLITICS--Memoirs of an ACORN Whistleblower"-- it's the Inside Story of ACORN.