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Greenville Business Magazine

The Business Narrative: Supporting Small Businesses and Consumers

Mar 04, 2024 10:14AM ● By Donna Walker

State Street Announces $100 Million Program for Minority Depository Institutions, Community Development Financial Institutions

State Street Corporation (NYSE: STT) announced a $100 million program to provide low-cost, stable deposit funding to minority depository institutions (MDIs) and Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) to support the firms’ collective missions of addressing inequities in communities by working toward a more just and equitable future.


As a part of the program, the firm is initially partnering with two mission-driven MDIs - Optus Bank, based in Columbia, South Carolina, and Mechanics & Farmers Bank (M&F Bank).


Both MDIs and CDFIs support low-to-moderate income communities through lending, affordable housing and workforce development.


“Our partnerships with MDIs and CDFIs are part of our firm’s broader business strategy to expand the financial market ecosystem and help unlock economic potential by encouraging long term growth and job creation – which ultimately promotes more equitable and prosperous outcomes for our key stakeholders and the communities we serve,” said Ron O’Hanley, chairman and chief executive officer of State Street.


O’Hanley added, “MDIs and CDFIs play a critical role in fueling economic growth within underserved and underbanked communities and it is an honor to be partnering with Optus Bank and M&F Bank and helping advance racial and wealth equity through our business practices.”


“We greatly appreciate State Street’s partnership and the shared commitment to closing the wealth gap by increasing access to financial support for underserved communities,” said Dominik Mjartan, president and CEO of Optus Bank.


Officials said the program builds upon State Street’s actions to advance racial equity.


In 2020, State Street announced its 10-point action plan with the ultimate goal of helping end systemic racism in our communities.


Additionally the firm became the first Global Systemically Important Financial Institution (GSIFI) to achieve the Management Leadership for Tomorrow (MLT) Black Equity at Work Bronze Certification, a designation for employers who have demonstrated a commitment to a systematic, results-oriented approach to Black equity in the workplace.


Optus Bank is federally designated Minority Depository Institution and a U.S. Treasury certified Community Development Financial Institution with $530 million in assets and thousands of customers across the U.S. served by mission driven bankers and digital banking solutions.


Founded in 1907 in North Carolina, M&F Bank is the second-oldest minority-owned bank in the United States. 


With $41.8 trillion in assets under custody and/or administration and $4.1 trillion in assets under management as of Dec. 31, 2023, State Street operates globally in more than 100 geographic markets and employs approximately 46,000 worldwide. 

Marriott Hilton Head Resort & Spa Rebrands to Hilton Beachfront Resort & Spa Hilton Head Island

On March 1, 2024, the former Marriott Hilton Head Resort & Spa was scheduled to rebrand as Hilton Beachfront Resort & Spa Hilton Head Island, the only Hilton-branded full-service resort within 200 miles of Hilton Head island.


The brand change comes on the heels of a recent multi-million dollar renovation that includes a transformation of 513 guest rooms and suites, including the Presidential Suite and four Vice Presidential Suites, which follows the recent updating of the resort’s public spaces, dining outlets and function space.


Owned and managed by Columbia Sussex, the Hilton Beachfront Resort & Spa Hilton Head Island is located in the residential community of Palmetto Dunes, which Condé Nast named one of the top resorts in the south in its Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards for the past three years in a row.


Visitors can stroll three miles of pristine beach, play three PGA golf courses, or explore 2,000 acres of natural beauty and outdoor activities.


Columbia Sussex is a private hotel company based in Crestview Hills, Kentucky.


Celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2022, the company was founded in 1972 and is owned by the Yung family and headed by William J. Yung III, president.


The company operates 41 hotels under three different brands including Marriott Hotels, which includes Renaissance, and Westin; Hilton Hotels and Resorts, and Hyatt Regency.


Officials say full-service hotels and resorts such as The Boulders Resort Golf & Spa, part of Hilton’s Curio Collection, in Carefree, Arizona, Marriott Phoenix Resort at The Buttes in Tempe, Arizona, Westin Atlanta Airport, Hilton Clearwater Beach Resort and Spa in Clearwater, FL, and Marriott Myrtle Beach Resort at Grand Dunes, South Carolina, collectively illustrate the depth of Columbia Sussex’s management expertise.

FG Communities Announces Successful Early Termination of Reg CF Offering

FG Communities, Inc., a company with the mission to preserve and improve affordable housing by acquiring and operating manufactured housing communities, including some located in South Carolina, announced the successful early termination of its Reg CF offering.


The company said it would accept additional subscriptions to purchase shares of its common stock through the close of business on Monday, March 4, 2024.


According to the Securities and Exchange Commission, a Reg CF offering enables eligible companies to offer and sell securities through crowdfunding. 


When FG Communities commenced its Reg CF offering on April 14, 2023, the company owned and operated 17 affordable housing communities with approximately 388 homesites.


The company now has a growing portfolio of 31 manufactured housing communities with approximately 795 homesites, which are either owned or under contract (or under letter of intent) to be acquired.


CEO Michael Anise said, "We're pleased with the success of our Reg CF offering. The capital that we have raised through Equifund has helped the company grow, as we have almost doubled our size over the last year. In light of our progress, we are considering launching another Reg CF campaign in the near term that we anticipate will reflect the value of our continued growth."


Chairman Kyle Cerminara added, "Access to capital is an important factor to FG Communities.  We are grateful for our relationship with, which has supported our funding needs over the last year, and we look forward to working with them again in the future."


FG Communities is a self-administered, self-managed real estate holding company.

Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge (SC) Is 6th Most Iconic Bridge for Scenic Commute, Survey Finds

America's landscape is graced with iconic bridges that not only connect destinations but also offer breathtaking views that can transform any mundane commute into an inspiring journey.


Imagine if every workday could begin and end with a drive across a landmark that stirs the soul and brings a moment of awe to our daily routines.


Gunther Volkswagen Fort Lauderdale posed a hypothetical question to 3,000 commuters nationwide:


If you could select any one of America’s iconic bridges to be part of your daily commute, which one would you pick?


The survey revealed some anticipated favorites along with a couple of surprises. Here's an enhanced overview of the top 10:


1.⁠ ⁠Admiral Clarey Bridge, Hawaii

As the top choice, the Admiral Clarey Bridge transforms any routine drive into a spectacular start or end to the workday. Crossing this bridge, with its sweeping views of Pearl Harbor, infuses a sense of history and tranquility into daily life, invigorating the soul of every commuter.


2.⁠ ⁠Sunshine Skyway Bridge, Florida

The Sunshine Skyway Bridge offers an escape into a postcard-worthy landscape. Imagine the daily stress melting away as you're suspended over the glistening Tampa Bay, with the sun setting over the Gulf of Mexico providing a stunning backdrop to ponder life's beauty. 


3.⁠ ⁠London Bridge, Arizona

This historic transplant, originally from London and now residing in Lake Havasu City, Arizona, stands as the third favorite. It offers a distinctive blend of British architectural heritage and the tranquil views of Lake Havasu.


4.⁠ ⁠Rickenbacker Causeway Bridge, Florida

The Rickenbacker Causeway promises a picturesque distraction from the hustle and bustle of Miami. Here, morning commutes are elevated with the skyline in the distance and the waters of Biscayne Bay below – a relaxing commute that's the perfect antidote to urban fatigue.


5.⁠ ⁠Golden Gate Bridge, California

Surprisingly not in first place, the iconic Golden Gate Bridge still made it into the top five. It promises an awe-inspiring vista of the San Francisco Bay and the vast Pacific, a jewel in San Francisco's architectural crown.


6.⁠ ⁠Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge, South Carolina

Standing as the pride of Charleston, the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge is a spectacular cable-stayed marvel that offers commuters and visitors alike a breathtaking panoramic view of Charleston Harbor and the historic city itself. As one of the most iconic landmarks in South Carolina, this bridge gracefully spans the harbor, connecting downtown Charleston with the neighboring town of Mount Pleasant. As travelers traverse its expanse, they are treated to unparalleled vistas of the bustling harbor below, where sailboats and cargo ships ply the waters against the backdrop of Charleston's stately skyline. 


7.⁠ ⁠Mackinac Bridge, Michigan

The second most popular was Michigan’s most iconic bridge. Connecting the Upper and Lower peninsulas of Michigan, it offers stunning views of the Straits of Mackinac and Lakes Michigan and Huron. 


8.⁠ ⁠Chicago Skyway Bridge, Illinois

The Chicago Skyway Bridge came in 8th position overall. Part of the Chicago Skyway toll road, it provides views of the Chicago skyline and Lake Michigan.


9. Casco Bay Bridge, Maine

Maine’s Casco Bridge was the 9th most popular among commuters. Connecting Portland and South Portland, this bridge provides scenic views of Portland Harbor and Casco Bay.


10. Alberton Gorge Bridges, Montana

And rounding up the top 10 were the Alberton Gorge Bridges in Montana. These bridges offer picturesque views of the Clark Fork River and the surrounding mountainous landscape. 


South Carolina had one other bridge ranked among the most iconic bridges in America as voted by commuters:


Pee Dee River Bridge

Serving as a vital link along Interstate 95, the Pee Dee River Bridge offers travelers a scenic respite amidst the rural landscape of South Carolina, while providing captivating views of the Great Pee Dee River.


As motorists traverse its expansive span, they are greeted by panoramic vistas of the winding river below, meandering through the picturesque countryside.

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