Last Updated on April 28, 2022 by BVN
Zanesha Williams |
In the Inland Empire and throughout the country, Black people are leading with new ideas in their respective industries with strengthening the Black Community as their North Star.
Trevor Rozier-Byrd, CEO and Founder of Stackwell Capital, is a perfect example. Rozier-Byrd spent a large part of his career in financial services and asset management spaces, which contributed to his desire to branch out and make understanding wealth more accessible.
One of the tools he believes can help accomplish this is Stackwell, an app designed to educate and encourage building Black generational wealth through personalized options and solutions. Rozier-Byrd excitedly shared why he felt an app like Stackwell was necessary. He stated, “…We have spent the entirety of our professional careers in and around the financial markets, frankly, helping build wealth for people that don’t look like us.”
When you navigate to Stackwell’s website and enter your email, you are met almost immediately with a disturbing truth. “The wealth gap between Black and white America is widening.”
The wealth gap
He expounded, “The reality is the numbers are telling a story of a racial wealth gap that’s growing more severe with each passing generation. We fundamentally believe as an organization, and as individuals, that the racial wealth gap is a social justice issue of our time. It directly impacts every other material issue that we care about within the Black community. So you think about things like access to affordable housing, healthcare, quality education, food insecurity issues, criminal justice reform, and all of those things are directly impacted by persons’ access to capital or lack thereof.”
Another frontrunner at Stackwell is Omosefe Aiyebomwan, the Vice President of Product. Much like Rozier-Byrd, Aiyebomwan’s objective at Stackwell is personal. When asked why she feels so strongly about the Black community’s need for Stackwell, she stated, “I’m a first generation Nigerian American, and eldest daughter of six. So I’ve always kind of been in this tribe community mindset. Part of what drew me to Stackwell is how well the mission aligned with my lived experiences. As someone who came from humble beginnings, to making a decent amount of money at an early age, and lacked the financial guidance around how to build wealth over time.”
Much like Aiyebomwan, others have wondered how to turn medium to high income into generational wealth. Stackwell makes understanding investing options personal, just like the experiences of those behind the scenes.
Rozier-Byrd mentions a major part of designing the Stackwell app was acknowledging and myth busting a common misconception that investing requires some level of sophistication or understanding of the financial market to get started. He says they worked to accomplish that, “…by deconstructing and demystifying many of those perceptions. We have specifically architected our solution and our platform to deliver information that speaks to people’s understanding of the markets or perceptions that they may have had coming in.”
Valuing the customer’s point of view
By pivoting themselves to a customer’s perspective, Rozier-Byrd and Aiyebomwan found the biggest issue they’d have to acknowledge is getting clients past an overwhelming fear about where to start. Most of the people they’ve talked to have acknowledged they know investing is a positive way to impact their future, but get lost understanding the biggest benefits and weighing risk versus reward.
Rozier-Byrd used a helpful analogy to describe the financial market that I may never forget. “As a consumer, if I wanted to go to the store and buy a pair of jeans or a pair of sneakers…If I got to the store that day, and they were on sale by 10 or 15%, I’d be super excited about that. It creates a buying opportunity for me to get the same thing that I value, but at a lower cost.”
He continued, “ That’s what I think about when I see the stock market going down.”
Meeting customers where they are
It is important to note that Stackwell’s goal is to meet each customer where they are in order to develop new financial knowledge. Aiyebomwan reiterated, “We think about the basics of investing, meeting people where they are and not assuming anything in terms of financial understanding. We really want to kind of guide people to understand how the broader process works.”
At this time, Stackwell is the beta phase of testing before full deployment and availability which is expected in late June, however, new interested customers can sign up for the wait list process. People on the waitlist are eligible for early access to try out Stackwell and an introduction to understanding how to leverage the market.
“It’s about us showing up in the community. We feel strongly about this issue and our commitment to the people that we’re trying to serve. We want your readers to know how committed we are to them individually.”
If you’re interested in learning more or signing up for Stackwell’s wait list, visit Stackwellcapital.com.