Monday, May 2, 2022

AI-focused company reapplies to form de novo

A Chicago company that provides AI solutions for lenders has resubmitted an application for deposit insurance for a proposed de novo bank. 

Organizers of BetaBank filed a new application with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. on Thursday. The group originally applied with the FDIC last summer. 

The bank would operate as a unit of Beta Financial Services, which is consistent with the original application. Beta Financial plans to apply with the Federal Reserve to become a bank holding company.

BetaBank would focus on small and midsize businesses. The proposed bank, which will have no physical branches, will offer deposits and commercial products such as working capital lines of credit and Small Business Administration loans. 

The bank would open with a minimum of $25 million in capital, with Beta Financial serving as the de novo’s sole shareholder, the application said. The company, however, is planning to raise at least $25 million through a private placement with other investors. 

There were a few updates in the new application. 

The original application said the company would infuse $20 million of initial capital into the proposed bank. 

Mark Spehr has replaced Kelly Emery as the proposed bank’s CEO. Spehr served as a volunteer coordinator for DePage Public Action to Deliver Shelter (PADS) for about ten years, according to the new application. 

Emery, chief operating officer of the Financial Health Network, is still listed as one of the proposed bank’s organizers. 

Spehr, Seke Ballard, Alan Harder, Alina Cowden and Justus Pugh are the other listed organizers. Chad Thompson, who was listed as an organizer in last summer’s application, wasn’t included in the latest paperwork. 

Ballard is Beta Financial’s CEO, according to his LinkedIn profile. Harder is Beta Financial’s business development director. Cowden is the company’s chief marketing officer, while Pugh is its sales and marketing manager

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