The Bank Slate


First Financial in Ohio strikes new community benefits pact

First Financial Bancorp in Cincinnati has agreed to a five-year, $2.4 billion community benefits agreement.

The $17.5 billion-asset company, under the accord reached with the National Community Reinvestment Coalition and other groups, will provide $700 million in mortgage lending and $600 million in small business lending in underserved communities.

The agreement includes more than $1 billion in community development lending and investments in affordable housing, community services, revitalization and stabilization, among other things.

The bank agreed to provide $18 million in philanthropy and invest $9 million in branch distribution and access, including three branches in underserved communities.

Finally, the bank committed to a 25% minimum sourceable vendor spend with minority-owned businesses, women-owned businesses, disability-owned businesses and veteran-owned businesses by 2028 and $1.2 million in marketing and communications to benefit underserved markets.

First Financial exceeded its $1.75 billion goal for its 2018-2023 community plan.

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