In the past 24 hours, Netflix has made announcements that are sure to make some buzz in the Black community. The streaming giant has not only been putting out Black content in waves, but putting their money and actions where it needs to be based upon how successful Black projects are with the company.
On yesterday, Netflix announced that it would be putting 100 million of its cash holdings into financial institutions and organizations to “directly support Black communities in the U.S.” While this is only 2% of their $5 billion in cash, this is a step in the right direction. Netflix will initially allocate $35 million of their $100 million commitment in two ways. Netflix will designate $10 million to the Hope Credit Union in hopes to boost economic opportunity in the Deep South. The company will hold $25 million in a newly established fund called the Black Economic Development Initiative that will be managed by the nonprofit Local Initiatives Support Corporation.
Shannon Alwyn, Netflix's treasury director said, “We believe bringing more capital to these communities can make a meaningful difference for the people and businesses in them, helping more families buy their first home or save for college, and more small businesses get started or grow.” According to the FDIC, Black banks account for only 1% of commercial bank assets in America. Hopefully, this move opens the door to conversation followed by action for other large and major corporations. I mean, Black Americans do have over 3 trillion in buying power. It only makes sense to support us, since we are keeping a lot of these companies afloat.
To continue with Netflix making a statement that Black Lives Matter in more ways than one, also on yesterday, the company announced the hiring of Bozoma Saint John as their new Chief Marketing Officer. It's a refreshing move seeing as though a lot of companies are only hiring Blacks as their Chief Diversity Officer, when are talent is much more than that.
Saint John has previous large company experience with Apple (Marketing executive for Apple Music) and Uber (Chief Brand Officer), and most recently has served as the Chief Marketing Officer at Endeavor, a talent and entertainment agency. Netflix's Chief Content Officer said of the new appointment, “Bozoma Saint John is an exceptional marketer who understands how to drive conversations around popular culture better than almost anyone. As we bring more great stories to our members around the world, she’ll define and lead our next exciting phase of creativity and connection with consumers.”
She said of joining Netflix, “I’m thrilled to join Netflix, especially at a time when storytelling is critical to our global, societal well-being. I feel honored to contribute my experience to an already dynamic legacy, and to continue driving engagement in the future.”
Congrats to Bozoma and keep trying to make a difference for Black Lives, Netflix. WE SEE YOU!!!