A bank started up, backed by billionaire Donald Trump supporter Peter Thiel and pitched as the “anti-woke” for “pro-freedom” Americans, is closing up shop after less than three months.
The bank, GloriFi, burned through $50 million in investment money, laid off most of its staff on Monday and informed workers it was shutting down, The Wall Street Journal was the first to report. Hopes of funding to keep operations running dwindled on Friday.
“We will be closing all accounts opened to date,” GloriFi’s website informed consumers. Checking accounts were closed on Friday, and savings accounts on December 6.
GloriFi had been touted as an alternative conservative banking system for consumers who find Wall Street too liberal.
Entrepreneur and major GOP donor Toby Neugebauer and business partner Nick Ayers — the chief of staff to former Vice President Mike Pence — said a huge market of plumbers, electricians and police officers was tired of big banks that didn’t share their values, according to a Journal profile of the operation earlier in the year.
GloriFi offered bank accounts and credit cards, and planned to provide mortgages and insurance, while touting capitalism, family, law enforcement and the freedom to “love God and country,” according to the Journal.
Neugebauer also laid out plans to offer gun owners discounts on home insurance, credit cards made from holster material and help paying legal bills if customers shot someone in self-defense, Rolling Stone reported.
Right-wing commentator Candace Owens spoke for the brand.
In addition to Thiel, the operation also attracted investors, including former Georgia Republican Sen. Kelly Loeffler and Citadel founder Ken Griffin.
But over the course of months, GloriFi has missed launch dates, blaming faulty technology and supplier issues, and investors’ money was all but gone, according to news reports.
The “financial challenges related to startup failures, the failing economy, reputational attacks and several negative stories took their toll,” a statement on the company’s website said.