Q. Why did Amalgamated go public?
A. We used to have three owners: the garment workers union and two private equity firms who made an investment in the company after the financial crisis. After several years, the private equity firms wanted an exit because they had generated a nice return on their investment. And the union has fundamentally changed since our founding in 1923 when there was a much more vibrant garment industry in this country. They wanted to take advantage of some of the investment that they've made in the bank.
But the more important reason we wanted to go public is to have access to the capital markets. I'm excited because having access to capital allows us to be able to grow. You don't find many companies bigger than
A. We need to now more successfully balance the need to create long-term value for our shareholders and continue to have the fortitude and resilience to be able to live true to our mission-oriented principles as a worker-focused bank.
A. We have become the institutional bank of the Democratic Party, many of its candidates, and many of the action committees, Super PACs, and other organizations. It's been good business for us. We have roughly
A. We take positions on places where we think we can make a difference as an employer. We were big advocates for the
Many banks are trying to be the every-person bank. They want to appeal to everybody of a particular geographic area. Most of our customers come to us, because they have values and a political persuasion that leans one way. They expect us to celebrate the work of our customers, or take positions on certain things.
I recognize we're unique in that respect, because we have that unique customer base. But that really is part of our business model, and it's been part of why we've been successful.
The interview has been edited for clarity and length.