Russell Westbrook buys Varo Bank after $63 million financing round

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Russell Westbrook invests in Varo Bank after $63 million funding round

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Russell Westbrook #4 of the Washington Wizards responds prior to betting the Denver Nuggets at Capital One Arena on February 17, 2021 in Washington, DC.

Will Newton | Getty Images

National Basketball Association star Russell Westbrook has actually signed up with monetary tech company Varo Bank as a brand-new financier after the business raised $63 million in a brand-new financing round.

Varo Bank revealed the financing round on Thursday, including Westbrook’s financial investment was made through his business company. Investment business Jefferies Group recommended Westbrook in the shift.

Terms of Westbrook’s financial investment were not offered.

Varo, a digitally-focused bank, stated the funds would be utilized to “further develop the product roadmap, including additional credit, savings, and transaction banking features.”

In 2020, Varo ended up being the very first consumer-focused fintech business to get approval from the FDIC, so it’s thought about a nationwide bank and permitted it to take client deposits. Previously, the fintech company was valued at $417.8 million, according to Pitchbook.

“We see it as a pretty big moat,” Varo Money CEO Colin Walsh informed CNBC last February when going over the approval. “It was a long process – for this to finally see daylight is a big deal for the industry.”

Westbrook, 32, will likewise be a consultant to the bank and focus his efforts to enhancing earnings inequality problems by means of Varo-driven programs targeting minority neighborhoods. He likewise wishes to enhance banking relations with the Black neighborhood.

“The banking system has ignored or underserved a large portion of the American population – particularly communities of color,” Westbrook stated in a declaration. “I’m passionate about making lasting social change and creating a stronger and more inclusive system. I am excited and ready to work with Varo to be a part of an economic revitalization for those who never had the access they deserved.”

In his very first year with the Washington Wizards, Westbrook is balancing 18.9 points, 9.4 rebounds and 9.5 helps. Westbrook is making approximately $41 million this season, which belongs to a five-year $206 million extension he signed with the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2017.

“The Varo team is thrilled Russell is joining us on our trailblazing journey as the only all-digital, mission-driven national bank in the country,” included Walsh. “We both share a view that banking can be – and needs to be – a force for good.  Russell is a visionary and his energy and passion for design, product excellence, and community impact will help propel Varo’s next phase of growth.”

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