A banking startup backed by billionaire Donald Trump supporter Peter Thiel and pitched as “anti-wake” to “pro-freedom” Americans is closing shop after less than three months.
The bank, GloriFi, burned $50 million in investment money, laid off most of its staff on Monday and informed employees it was closing, The Wall Street Journal first reported. Hoped for funding to keep the operation running fell through last Friday.
“We are closing all accounts opened so far,” the GloriFi website informed consumers. Checking accounts were closed on Friday and savings accounts on December 6.
GloriFi was 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 — former Vice President Mike Pence’s chief of staff — said a huge market of plumbers, electricians and police officers had had enough of big banks that didn’t share their values. according to a Journal profile of the surgery earlier this year.
GloriFi offered bank accounts and credit cards, and planned to provide mortgages and insurance, while also touting capitalism, family, law enforcement and the freedom to “love God and country,” according to the Journal.
Neugebauer also presented plans to offer gun owners discounts on home insurance, credit cards made from casing material and help pay legal bills if customers shoot someone in self-defense, Rolling Stone reported.
Right-wing commentator Candace Owens was the spokesperson for the brand.
In addition to Thiel, the operation also attracted investors, including former Republican Senator Kelly Loeffler of Georgia and Ken Griffin, founder of Citadel.
The “financial challenges related to startup failures, the failing economy, reputational attacks and multiple negative stories took their toll,” according to a statement on the company’s website.