CIBC helps make community impact with investment in First Independence Corporation

CHICAGO, MAY 31, 2022 — CIBC today announced that it has invested $1 million in First Independence Corporation, parent of First Independence Bank, the first Black-owned and operated commercial bank in Metropolitan Detroit and the state of Michigan.

“This investment is a testament to our commitment to community,” said Beth Witczak, head of CIBC U.S. Community Development. “First Independence Bank shares the same philosophy as CIBC when it comes to serving our communities, and this investment enables them to deliver financial services with a focus on underserved and minority communities.”

First Independence Bank, which opened in 1970, offers full-service banking products and services to local communities, primarily in the Detroit Metropolitan Market. The bank currently has 3 branch locations in Detroit and in the Twin Cities, with a fourth location scheduled to open later this year. First Independence Bank intends to focus on developing programs to support minority homeownership and business development and has commitments and leadership guidance from the large financial institutions currently in the market.

CIBC serves the Detroit market with consumer and small business products that are affordable and offer flexible underwriting. The bank has dedicated community mortgage small business lenders focused on serving diverse clients in the market. From closing cost assistance and down payment programs for eligible home buyers to small business programs designed for start-ups and companies with revenue less than $1 million, CIBC has a suite of products that are designed to meet the needs of low- to-moderate-income borrowers.

First Independence Bank is one of just 17 Minority-Owned Depository Institutions (MDI) designated as African American and is also a certified Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), and the bank itself is one of only 142 minority depository institutions in the country. It is the only MDI headquartered in the state of Michigan and the only bank headquartered in the city of Detroit.

An investment in an MDI is highly responsive to the need for capital and banking services in low-and moderate-income and minority areas. CIBC’s investment, together with financial backing from other institutions, will support affordable housing and small businesses, stabilize communities, and meet the financial needs to individuals where they are located.

“We believe the keys to success for any business include a strong foundation and positive community impact,” said Witczak. “First Independence Bank has both, and that’s why we’re proud to support them and the communities they serve.”

About CIBC

CIBC is a leading North American financial institution with 11 million personal banking, business, public sector and institutional clients. CIBC offers a full range of advice, solutions and services in the United States, across Canada and around the world. In the U.S., CIBC Bank USA provides commercial banking, private and personal banking and small business banking solutions and CIBC Private Wealth offers investment management, wealth strategies and legacy planning. Visit the CIBC U.S. homepage.

About First Independence Corporation and First Independence Bank

First Independence Bank is the 7th largest Black-owned commercial bank in the United States. Headquartered in Detroit, Michigan, with its newest location in Minneapolis, Minnesota, it offers a variety of high-quality banking services from managing accounts to personal loans, mortgages, consumer education and investments. First Independence Bank has 3 locations and offers banking solutions online and digitally through its mobile app. Established in 1970, the bank continues to be a responsible leader, efficiently serving the financial needs of its community, its businesses, and its customers nationwide. First Independence Bank is a member of FDIC and Equal Housing Lender. For more information visit the First Independence Bank website Opens in a new window..

For further information contact:

Kristy L. Daube, Director, U.S. Media Relations

 770-617-0591 Opens your phone app.


All loans subject to credit approval. The CIBC logo is a registered trademark of CIBC, used under license. Member FDIC and Equal Housing Lender.

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