Two black-run banks merge to form over $ 1 billion institution

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City First Bank and Broadway Federal Bank announced their merger on Wednesday. Together, the lenders have said they will hold more than $ 1 billion in assets.

City First President and CEO Brian E. Argrett said the two banks had been working on their deal for a year.

“We were going to do this deal because it made sense and because it would provide additional resources to our communities,” Argrett told CNN Business Thursday.

Los Angeles-based Broadway Federal is a community savings bank dedicated to providing conventional loans to minority consumers that are often overlooked by traditional commercial banks, according to the company’s website.

City First, which is based in Washington DC, describes itself as an “impact-driven” institution that specializes in lending to disadvantaged individuals and communities. Argrett said the combination of their resources will allow the two banks to accomplish more than they could separately.

“It gives us more lending power,” Argrett said. “This brings additional financial capacity to be able to serve the companies held back. ”

Argrett said he expects the banks to complete their merger early next year.

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