The year of 2020 has shown us that our economy requires better financial tools and resources to set us up for success.

In an effort to bring modern banking to the global gig economy, fintech companies Gig Wage and Green Dot have come together to forge a strategic long-time partnership and investing relationship to offer reliable banking solutions and finance tools to gig workers — better known as underbanked independent contractors, a press release reports.

According to Dallas Innovates, Gig Wage — a Dallas-based Black-led firm — recruited the help of Green Dot as an infrastructure bank partner and helped lead its Series A funding round which raised $7.5 million total, enabling Gig Wage to boost its seamless and popular instant payments platform.

“The fast-growing gig economy presents tremendous demand and opportunity for enhanced banking and payments tools and experiences,” said Dan Henry, CEO of Green Dot, in a statement. “We’re thrilled to partner with Gig Wage to grow this vertical and empower gig workers and their employers with faster, more seamless financial solutions.”

By leveraging Green Dot’s support as a banking services platform, Gig Wage is now able to design and deploy their own customized money movement solutions for its growing customer base.

A news release shares that with the financial support of Green Dot, Gig Wage has announced plans to introduce a new debit card with no monthly fee, free online bill pay, and free cash withdrawals at more than 19,000 ATM locations; free cash pick-up at over 7,000 retail locations nationwide; and other products and tools designed for gig workers and their employers.

“The 1099 economy is exploding, and Gig Wage is thrilled to bring a truly comprehensive solution to market,” said Craig J. Lewis, founder and CEO of Gig Wage, in a statement. “As we laid the foundation to offer financial infrastructure for the ‘Future of Work,’ it was abundantly clear Green Dot was the best partner for us to help the most people. Our partnership with Green Dot will not only help us on our mission to increase the GDP of the gig economy, but also help us provide a financial social safety net for gig workers everywhere.”

According to Atlanta Black Star, this partnership was already in the works when mass protests in response to George Floyd’s death arose back in June, but the public outcry prompted both Lewis and Henry to have a dialogue about race.

“That sound gave Dan and me a chance to break away from the transactional part of the conversation and talk about how I was feeling at the time,” Lewis told Bloomberg. “That was at the top of mind for me every day. There was no separating the grind of being an entrepreneur with the grind of being a Black man in America.”

That conversation further motivated them to cement their partnership and promote financial equity for Black and low-income workers.

“For every George Floyd murder we see, we need to stop those things from happening, but we also need people to be successful,” Lewis said. “We need people to have courage to build amazing companies. We need to be able to lobby and write checks. That’s what drives my passion to help people get paid.”