Saturday, July 22, 2017

PebblePost raises $47M as it uses online data to fuel direct mail marketing

PebblePost, a startup that uses online data to target consumers with printed mail, has raised $47 million in a combination of equity and debt.

That includes the $15 million, RRE Ventures-led Series B that the company announced in February. The equity portion of the funding has been expanded to $20 million, with another $27 million coming from a loan facility from Horizon Technology Finance, plus a credit facility from Silicon Valley Bank.

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Wednesday, February 24, 2016

5 Trends to Watch in Consumer Finance

The financial crisis has changed the way many Americans view the financial system. In a 2014 Gallup poll, only 26 percent expressed having “‘a great deal’ or ‘quite a lot’ of confidence in banks,” down from 41 percent in 2007 and a high of 60 percent in 1979.

That Americans deeply distrust the financial sector is not surprising given the scope of the crisis, during which 5 million families lost their homes to foreclosure and households lost trillions of dollars in wealth. Many families doubt their own basic financial security, with nearly half of all Americans unable to come up with even $400 in an emergency without borrowing or selling something, according to a recent Federal Reserve survey.

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Monday, February 8, 2016

Former Hispanic Chamber CEO becomes market head for local bank

Varsovia Fernandez, who had been president and CEO of the Greater Philadelphia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce for much of the past decade before stepping down at the end of 2015, will become Philadelphia market leader for fast-growing Customers Bank.

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Saturday, January 23, 2016

Strategic Hispanic growth plans begin with readiness assessment

The Hispanic market is the largest, fastest-growing segment in this country, but that’s only one reason U.S. credit unions are working hard to learn more about this demographic.

Smart credit union executives understand the Hispanic population is very young compared to other U.S. ethnic groups. This presents an opportunity to lower the average age of membership by bringing Hispanics into the fold. Hispanics are also disproportionately underserved, and credit union leaders view helping Hispanics navigate the U.S. financial system as an important part of the overall credit union mission. Lastly, the face of the American consumer is changing, and growing membership means adapting to consumers, rather than forcing them to adapt to the credit union.

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Monday, December 28, 2015

Minorities exploited by Warren Buffett’s mobile-home empire

Times Watchdog: Clayton Homes has used a pattern of deception to help extract billions from poor customers around the country — particularly people of color, who make up a substantial and growing portion of its business. The company is controlled by Warren Buffett, one of the world’s richest men.

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Monday, December 21, 2015

Hispanics face barriers getting health insurance

There is no doubt that the Health Insurance Marketplace, a key feature of the Affordable Care Act as promoted by President Obama, has been good for the health of residents of Tennessee.

In 2015 over 231,000 Tennesseans were enrolled in the Health Insurance Marketplace and 83 percent of those were receiving insurance premium subsidies, making the insurance affordable.  The Gallup Poll reports that this dropped the rate of the uninsured from 16.8 percent to 12.9 percent.

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Saturday, December 12, 2015

The ‘Facebook of Latin America’ Taringa! Awarded $76,000 in Bitcoin to its Users

Taringa! is called Facebook of Latin America and most of its 75 million users are from the Argentina, Mexico, Spain, Colombia, Chile, Peru and the US Latino community. Just over six months after the launch of its Creadores program, Taringa! has distributed 195 BTC — or $76,000 USD to its top content creating users.

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Friday, December 4, 2015

The 'Hidden Geniuses' of Silicon Valley

One by one last year, major tech companies came out of the diversity closet. From behemoths like Google, Yahoo, Apple, Facebook and eBay to relatively pint-sized startups like Pinterest and Indiegogo, each published for the first time candid reports on the glaring gender and race imbalances among their employees.

These reports were typically followed with vows by company leaders to make sure their staff better reflected the populations they served — to somehow fix the broken pipeline that has shut out otherwise qualified minorities and women from careers in the booming tech field. It’s a job easier blogged than done. Black and Hispanic students made up 4% and 7.7% of all college tech majors in 2014, respectively

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Thursday, December 3, 2015

El Salvador Conducts First Investment Forum In New York

NEW YORK, Dec. 1, 2015 - El Salvador Export and Investment Attraction Agency (PROESA) conducted its first Investment Forum, El Salvador: Opportunities Beyond Expectations, with invited guests from a cross-section of the business and investment communities in Manhattan and the surrounding metropolitan area. A panel of Salvadorian officials and a US businessman discussed the opportunities and advantages of doing business and investing in El Salvador.

Speaking at the forum Mr. Sigfrido Reyes, President of PROESA said: "More than 50 companies from all around the world have already established a home for their operations in El Salvador. We have every expectation that it will continue to grow."

Referencing the benefits of commerce in El Salvador, Reyes continued: "The people of El Salvador are friendly and gracious in their hospitality." El Salvador, located in the middle of the Americas, has adopted the US dollar - considered a major factor for investors.  Citing the issue of safety, security, and overall stability of El Salvador, Reyes said: "We have fought and won corruption, have worked vigorously to promote economic growth, and today we offer a country that is ready, in all aspects, to be your partner."

Speaking specifically to the issue of economics, Carolina Vides, Investment and Export Manager for PROESA, said: "It all starts with investment laws.  El Salvador offers attractive tax incentives which guaranty investors a secure environment." The country has begun to attract foreign direct investors (FDI), a statistic supported by the fact that it has more foreign direct investors than any other country in the region.

Phil Pedone, panelist and US businessman with operations in El Salvador, believes El Salvador is an outstanding place to conduct business, stating: "They have free trade agreements with 42 countries, and taxes are very favorable for foreign investors." According to Pedone, profits from their Salvadorian business have allowed them to make investments that have helped grow their business both in US and El Salvador.

Salvadoran UN Ambassador, H.E. Ruben Zamora, in closing, stated: "We have been speaking today of all the advantages of investing in El Salvador. A major factor of foreign investors joining us in El Salvador is that it creates opportunities for everyone; we have created an environment for businesses to invest and grow with El Salvador."

About PROESA:
Founded in 2000, PROESA is El Salvador's Export and Investment Attraction Agency.  PROESA is an independent government agency whose mission it is to improve the lives of the people of El Salvador through the promotion of exports, investments and public private partnerships. And to, increase national productivity by the creation employment opportunities and enhanced national development.

SOURCE El Salvador Export and Investment Attraction Agency (PROESA)

Sunday, November 29, 2015

How mobile payment services could help low-income consumers

When Apple unveiled its mobile payment service Apple Pay last year, Tim Cook, the company’s chief executive, described it as “an entirely new category of service.”

During the company’s annual media event, Mr. Cook pointed to an image of an overstuffed wallet bulging with credit cards.

“Our vision is to replace this,” he said, to cheers from the crowd. “It’s so easy to lose your card or have it compromised, it’s no wonder that people have dreamed of replacing these for years.” He paused for effect

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Sunday, November 22, 2015

Financial Access and Services Are Essential for Immigrant Integration

Latinos have represented the fastest-growing segment of the U.S. population in recent decades. Significant growth is expected to continue -- the Census Bureau estimates the Hispanic population will increase by 86 percent between 2015 and 2050, amounting to 119 million or one in four Americans, by 2060.

Given this tremendous population growth, the health of the U.S. economy is deeply tied to the status of Latino financial health. Access to safe, affordable, and cross-cultural financial products and services is essential for Latino individuals, families, and entrepreneurs to fully participate in the banking system.

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Friday, October 30, 2015

At Wall Street Latino Summit, A Focus On Expanding the Wealth

NEW YORK, NY - In a penthouse atop a luxury Manhattan hotel, there are discreet signs that this is a high-level business meeting. The men are a sea of dark suits and discreet ties, while the women favor well-tailored ensembles and pearls. At one table, the Wall Street Journal and Investor's Business Daily are splayed out next to a Louis Vuitton purse and a Blackberry.

And if you take a closer look, you will see that nearly all of the guests and speakers in attendance here are Latinos. They gathered in New York City this week for the New America Alliance's (NAA) 15th Annual Wall Street Summit to network, strategize, and focus on accelerating on the economic progress of U.S. Latinos.

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Sunday, September 13, 2015

Attracting Young, Diverse Mortgage Bankers

The Radius Financial Group, a mortgage lender in Norwell, Mass., recently made a $1 million investment in its future. The outlay wasn’t for technology, marketing or even office space. Rather, the company executives decided the future well-being of Radius depends upon its ability to attract younger employees from more diverse backgrounds.

So they started what they call the Next Generation Independent Mortgage Banker training program, and hired a young Marine captain to lead the initiative. In May, about two dozen candidates became the first to enter the 12-week immersion program, which paid them a base salary. And this month, 13 of these candidates graduated. Of them, six are veterans from the military, one is black and two are Hispanic, according to Keith Polaski, the chief operating officer and a founder of Radius.

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Wednesday, July 29, 2015

ezDinero Offers Credit-Building Loans to Hispanic Consumers

CHICAGO, IL, July 28, 2015 /24-7PressRelease/ -- ezDinero Loan Solutions, an online alternative lending service targeting the needs of the Hispanic market, connects first-time borrowers to lenders specializing in non-traditional loans. Today ezDinero announced a new program to offer installment loans of up to $20k to low-income and other underserved populations.

With a mission to foster community development and individual success, ezDinero is expanding its suite of high-quality loans available to its target borrowers. By offering installment loans and other loan types to credit-challenged consumers, ezDinero hopes to broaden the impact of the Hispanic community and offer greater opportunities for Spanish-speaking individuals in the U.S. and abroad.

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Thursday, July 16, 2015

Hispanics Unbanked: Understanding Hispanics’ Financial Services Usage

The mandate to drive sales and build loyalty among Hispanic consumers is felt across all industries. This is felt acutely in the financial industry. Driven by economic, cultural, and language factors, Hispanic consumers significantly under-index on banking status and financial products usage. This represents not only a huge business upside for financial services companies, but also a human opportunity in emboldening and increasing access to historically underserved Hispanic consumers.

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