Ashley D. Bell and Dr. Bernice A. King Team Up to Acquire a Bank in Utah

A new Black-owned financial institution may soon emerge west of Texas, as reported by The Sacramento Observer. Redemption Holding Co. (RHC), led by former White House Policy Advisor Ashley D. Bell, is seeking to acquire Holladay Bank & Trust in Holladay, UT.

If the plan is approved, the Utah financial institution will be rebranded as Redemption Bank and become the only Minority Depository Institution serving underserved populations west of Texas. Bell, also the CEO of Black-owned fintech startup Ready Life, aims to provide financial services to underserved communities and help them on the path to homeownership.

Dr. Bernice A. King, CEO of the King Center and daughter of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., will support RHC’s efforts by joining the bank’s advisory board as the senior vice president for impact banking, along with venture capitalist Dhani Jones. King’s decision to support the endeavor is inspired by her father’s call for Black Americans to deposit money into Black-owned financial institutions.

Investors, including New York Community Bank and billionaire Ryan Smith, are also backing the push to make Holladay Bank & Trust Black-owned. Bell expressed optimism about the endeavor, emphasizing the historical significance of a group of Black investors acquiring a non-Black, white-owned bank in Salt Lake City. If successful, this initiative could pave the way for new centers of opportunity for people of color in the financial sector.