Alphapointe is a private, non-profit organization that has been serving people who are blind and visually impaired since 1911. Headquartered in Kansas City, it’s the third largest employer of visually impaired individuals in the U.S. providing outreach, services, employment and education to thousands of people a year.
We sat down with Reinhard Mabry, President and CEO of Alphapointe to ask him more about his business and their goals for the future.
Q: What are some of Alphapointe’s goals?
A: We provide employment, guidance, and services to people who are blind, teaching people to provide for themselves and to be independent in their communities. Even in the earliest days of the agency, it’s been about this. Our goal is to provide a sustainability solution.
Q: What are your hopes for business growth?
A: We need to remain relevant and set ourselves up to accommodate the career goals of the blind. Alphapointe wants to create more opportunities for jobs. Top line revenue, and bottom line profit is not really the language we speak in. It’s the impact in our community and the benefit of the people in it that we care about.
Q: What has the shift to Bank Midwest been like?
A: The relationship with Bank Midwest is a relatively new one but a very strong one. We were considering refinancing, and they came up with a plan that was aggressive, but one that was achievable. They understood our business and they wanted to be a part of our goal. We also have fundraising events in order to increase awareness in the community, and increase giving. Bank Midwest immediately jumped into the fray—they not only came to the table with money, but also came with a dozen of their associates. They invest their time with us, not just their money.
Q: We put people first. How have you seen that at Alphapointe?
A: Bank Midwest helps out with solutions for employees. They figured out how to put an ATM in the break room. It’s something they recognized as being of real value to the visually impaired, and were happy to help out with this huge benefit for our people.
Q: Our promise is to bank with common sense. What role do you think common sense plays in business?
A: From my vantage point, a not-for-profit can sometimes have trouble getting the attention of a bank. Its livelihood can depend on the willingness of the community to be generous. Not every bank is going to see that as a place where they can open up the finances and see that it’s a viable and lively business. But Bank Midwest had the common sense to open up our documents and read them. They don’t stop with non-profit. They understood both our financial sense as well as our strategic sense.
Q: What has been the biggest impact of working with Bank Midwest?
A: Our latest New York deal is really achieving one of our strategic goals to people that are blind. We bought property that we are renovating to be our new location in New York City. Bank Midwest should feel very pleased that they financed what is going to be a very critical and viable property for 200+ employees to work every day in the heart of Queens.
Ultimately, we feel that Bank Midwest understands us as an organization and they care about our people.
— Reinhard Mabry, President & CEO, Alphapointe
Learn more about how Bank Midwest can empower your business to reach your goals. Contact us today.