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April 4, 2022

On the web

December 13, 2021

On the web

Visa Warns Against Misuse Of ‘Cashless ATMs’ Used By Cannabis Retailers To Skirt Restrictions – Marijuana Moment

Marijuana Moment

“Visa, the world’s second-largest card payment company, recently issued a compliance memo to customers warning them that miscoding point-of-sale transactions through the use of so-called cashless ATMs—a practice used by some cannabis retailers as a workaround to accept credit or debit cards for purchases—could lead to penalties or other unspecified enforcement action. The warning comes as congressional lawmakers grapple with how to handle marijuana business banking. The House passed a defense bill in September with language that would have protected banks that work with state-legal cannabis companies , but after talks with the Senate, those provisions were not attached to a new bicameral deal filed Tuesday .”

October 26, 2021

On the wires

Valley Bank Launches New Digital Payment App for Cannabis Industry

Valley National Bank , a subsidiary of Valley National Bancorp (NASDAQ:VLY), announced today that it is creating a new digital payment platform designed specifically for cannabis-related businesses. Valley Pay, Valley’s new digital payment solution, will migrate cash usage to a secure, web application, easing the burden on cannabis operators who are reliant on cash transactions today. The cannabis industry remains heavily reliant on cash transactions to conduct business as major debit and credit cards are not accepted.”

October 14, 2021

On the web

Higher Growth to Enable Cannabis Business Banking


“California’s North Bay Credit Union partnered with Austin Capital Trust Company and Silicon Valley FinTech MRBD to create the Credit Union Service Organization (CUSO) HigherGrowth, the Credit Union Times reported. The new CUSO, which has been in development for more than two years, will enable credit unions and community banks to provide financial services to cannabis companies without those firms having to meet strict federal and state compliance requirements to have a commercial bank account, the report said.”

August 25, 2021

On the web

Banking on cannabis: the new network of lenders for a semi-legal industry


“Cannabis companies such as Dreamfields are caught in a gap between state and federal law. Despite California making weed legal for recreational use in 2016, the federal government still classifies marijuana as an illegal substance. With top US banks such as JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo and payments companies including Visa and Mastercard adhering to federal law, they have opted out of serving cannabis companies. But now three years later, Garrambone says Dreamfields is doing almost all of its transactions electronically, taking out loans and making deposits.”

August 20, 2021

On the web

Eaze to Become America’s Largest Cannabis Delivery Service After Buying Green Dragon


“Eaze this week announced significant plans to expand into one of the U.S.’s largest cannabis delivery services. One of the original on-demand cannabis delivery services, the Bay Area-based company is set to acquire cannabis retailer and cultivator Green Dragon, which operates in the hot markets of Colorado and Florida. Combined with existing operations in California and Michigan, the deal would find Eaze operating in America’s four largest cannabis markets.”

August 2, 2021

On the wires

Blaze & Spence Labs Announce Partnership With Fully Integrated Cannabis Payment System for Online Ordering and Delivery

“Spence Labs, a bank-backed, compliant digital payment system for the cannabis industry, today announced a full POS integration with BLAZE®, the industry-leading enterprise resource planning and point of sale (POS) platform for legal cannabis. This partnership is a game changer for both dispensaries and customers, who have for far too long relied on cash transactions. Now consumers who order online or in the store can pay in a compliant digital way.”

July 26, 2021

On the wires

RocketFuel Introduces Crypto Payment Solution for Cannabis Dispensaries and Merchants

RocketFuel (OTC: RKFL) (“RocketFuel” or the “Company”), a global provider of one-click online payment options using Bitcoin and 50+ other cryptocurrencies, today announced that it will be making its payment solution available to be used by licensed cannabis dispensaries and merchants. Integrating RocketFuel into the merchant’s payment checkout will ensure that, unlike the typical cash transactions which come with security and logistical problems, merchants can accept crypto payments from users who have cryptocurrencies in a private wallet or in certain crypto exchange accounts. This service will even cover online delivery orders if they fall under permissible local regulations. RocketFuel will be compliant with FinCEN guidance on providing financial services to the cannabis industry.”

July 16, 2021

On the web

July 2, 2021

On the web

Apple Now Allows Marijuana Businesses On Its App Store, While Google Maintains Ban | Marijuana Moment

Marijuana Moment

“Apple will no longer prohibit marijuana delivery services from being hosted on its App Store—one of the latest pro-cannabis developments to come out of the tech industry. The policy was updated last month to remove the ban, with some restrictions. A marijuana app must be geo-restricted to jurisdictions where cannabis is legal, and the program must be “submitted by a legal entity that provides the services, and not by an individual developer.””

April 20, 2021

On the web

U.S. House of Representatives Approves Cannabis Banking Bill


“The U.S. House of Representatives on Monday passed legislation that would allow banks to provide services to cannabis companies in states where it is legal, a step towards removing what analysts say is a barrier to development of a national industry. Lawmakers voted 321-101 to approve the bill and send it to the Senate. The bill clarifies that proceeds from legitimate cannabis businesses would not be considered illegal and directs federal regulators to craft rules for how they would supervise such banking activity.”

April 8, 2021

On the wires

March 19, 2021

On the web

First U.S. Penalty for Pot Banking Violations Lands on Credit Union


“A small credit union in Michigan was recently penalized in what’s thought to be the first example of U.S. regulators publicly calling out a financial institution for compliance failures involving the cannabis industry. Under the enforcement action, Live Life Federal Credit Union must stop opening new marijuana-related accounts, and it has to file missing suspicious activity reports. The National Credit Union Administration is also requiring the Fraser, Mich., institution to implement an automated transaction monitoring system by April 30.”

March 17, 2021

On the web

In New Round, Dutchie, Focused on Smoother Cannabis Retail, Sees Its Valuation Soar by Eight Times


Dutchie , a nearly four-year-old, Bend, Oregon company that charges cannabis dispensaries a monthly fee to create and run their websites, process their orders and track what needs to be prepped for pick up, has raised $200 million in Series C funding at a $1.7 billion valuation. That’s roughly eight times the valuation the company was assigned last August , when it closed on $35 million in Series B funding. In fact, $200 million is exactly how much backers thought it was worth last summer.”

March 9, 2021

On the wires

Digital Payments Platform AeroPay Raises $5+ Million Venture Round Led by Chicago Ventures Amid Rapid Growth

AeroPay , a Chicago-based digital payments platform powering bank transfer payments for businesses, announced today the closing of a $5+ million Venture Round. The round was led by Chicago Ventures , a firm that leads investments in early-stage startups. The Chicago Ventures portfolio includes online financial services company M1 Finance, celebrity video-sharing website Cameo, digital parking marketplace SpotHero, and peer-to-peer review site G2.”

February 9, 2021

On the wires

February 3, 2021

On the web

Senate Push to Legalize Weed Is Mixed Blessing for Pot Payment Firms


“A group of Senators is pushing for federal cannabis legalization this year, which would open the market for mainstream payment providers — and bring heavy competition to the payment companies that pioneered this space. Senate Majority leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), and Sens Cory Booker (D-N.J) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) promised to release a discussion draft on reform that would end the federal ban and would introduce legislation that would address taxes and regulations.”

January 19, 2021

On the wires

Blackbird and AeroPay Announce Strategic Partnership to Bring Cashless Payments to Cannabis Businesses for Online Ordering

“Blackbird, a cannabis software and delivery company, and AeroPay , a leading financial technology company that provides payment processing solutions to the cannabis industry, announced a strategic partnership to bring cashless payments to cannabis businesses for online ordering. The partnership includes an integration of AeroPay’s payments platform into Blackbird’s white-labeled dispensary menus and the BlackbirdGo cannabis marketplace. The two companies also have plans to bring greater efficiencies to other parts of the cannabis supply chain such as physical retail and B2B.”

December 23, 2020

On the wires

ICICI Bank Canada Visa* Debit Card Launched

“ICICI Bank Canada today announced the launch of a debit card. Named, ‘ICICI Bank Canada Visa Debit Card’, it offers customers an unparalleled benefit of online shopping, purchasing at millions of retail outlets across the world and making quick contactless payments at Point of Sale (PoS) machines across Canada. This card also empowers customers to withdraw cash from thousands of Automated Banking Machines (ABMs) in the country without surcharge#.”

October 28, 2020

On the web

Banks Navigate Hazy Regulations to Serve Cannabis Businesses

Wall Street Journal (pay wall)

“Many financial institutions looking to offer banking services to the expanding number of legal cannabis growers and distributors in the U.S. are still limited by spotty regulations and expensive compliance efforts. The disparities between federal and state laws governing the use of marijuana and hemp, and the differences across states, are inhibiting banks from stepping into what has become a lucrative and legal business in many areas. Regulators have issued scant guidance and some of the existing advisories are outdated or set few clear obligations for banks, such as information that a bank should ask for from potential clients, financial institutions say.”

October 16, 2020

On the web

Nabis raises $5m Series A to grow its cannabis distribution platform


“Nabis is a business to business distributor, handling logistics, payment, and warehousing. Instead of being a distributor for beer, snacks, or pet supplies, Nabis is a cannabis distributor. The company acts as a middleman between cultivators and retail establishments, providing both parties unique services. Since it’s illegal to ship cannabis through traditional means, most cannabis operators turn to private operations to transport goods.”

April 17, 2020

On the web

Online Cannabis Marketplace Dutchie Now Taking Visa, Mastercard Payments In Canada


“In an exclusive conversation online cannabis marketplace operator Dutchie revealed it has been quietly processing Visa and Mastercard payments in Canada since Thursday, April 9, enabled by a partnership with secure payment solutions provider Merrco. While cannabis is federally legal in Canada – unlike the U.S., implementing digital and/or contactless payment solutions continues to pose a challenge for most small businesses. Dutchie is among one of the first players in Canada to successfully launch Visa and Mastercard payments processing.”

September 16, 2019

On the wires

Although A Long And Arduous Process, Casco Bay Hemp Is Excited To Announce They Are Now Accepting Credit Card Payment For Their CBD Products

“Like the majority of companies in the CBD product sales business, Casco Bay Hemp lost their credit card processing capabilities 4 months ago. The majority of businesses were using Elavon, who unfortunately stopped all hemp processing, leaving everyone in the lurch.  Starting September 1st, 2019 Casco Bay Hemp was accepted into the pilot program for Square’s CBD/Hemp division, a quietly launched invite only beta testing program. Square has been closely watching the evolving public policies while continually striving to create new opportunities for clients. For every CBD business in the market, this is much needed and exciting News.”

September 11, 2019

On the web

These Brothers Just Raised $15 Million for Their Startup, Dutchie, a Kind of Shopify for Cannabis Dispensaries


“Ross Lipson comes from an entrepreneurial family, so perhaps it’s no wonder that as a college student, he dropped out of school to jump into the online food space, including co-founding, then selling , one of Canada’s first online food ordering service startups. It’s even less surprising that having gone through that experience, Lipson would use what he learned in the service of another startup: Dutchie , a two-year-old, 36-person, Bend, Ore.-based startup whose software is used by a growing number of cannabis dispensaries that pay the startup a monthly subscription fee to create and maintain their websites, as well as to accept orders and track what needs to be ready for pickup.”

July 30, 2019

On the wires

POSaBIT Launches Fully Compliant Mobile Payments Technology for Cannabis Industry


POSaBIT , a leading financial technology company delivering unique blockchain-enabled payment processing and point of sale (POS) systems for cash-only businesses with a focus on the cannabis industry, announced the rollout of its fully compliant mobile payments system for dispensaries across states. POSaBIT’s new handheld device allows for compliant processing of mobile delivery that could be extended across the 25-plus states that currently allow for delivery to medical and, in some cases, recreational cannabis consumers.  “Delivery is one of the fastest growing segments of the cannabis industry and an area that many dispensaries are moving toward,” said Ryan Hamlin, POSaBIT CEO and co-founder. “Our fully compliant solution allows businesses to feature a state-of-the-art retail customer experience for both in-store and delivery, while also providing in-depth business analytics and increased revenues for businesses.””

June 18, 2019

On the web

Governors Call on Congress to Pass Cannabis Safe Harbor for Financial Institutions


“In a letter to Congress, the governors advocated for the Secure and Fair Enforcement (“SAFE”) Banking Act , or similar legislation, to remove legal uncertainty for banks and credit unions seeking to provide marijuana financing. As previously noted , the SAFE Banking Act creates protections for depository institutions that provide financial services to cannabis-related legitimate businesses and to service providers for such businesses. According to the governors’ letter, without the services of banks to help manage the businesses, the cannabis industry is forced to rely on cash to transact legal cannabis business, which poses an additional burden on state and local agencies, as well as an employee safety risk.”

June 17, 2019

On the web

Columbia Care Launches Credit Card for Medical Cannabis Industry

Cards International

“Columbia Care, a multistate operator in the medical cannabis industry, has launched a national credit programme across the US. The Columbia National Credit programme (CNC Card) enables the company capable of accepting a credit card for cannabis purchases. The launch follows a pilot in New York in the second half of last year.”

April 23, 2019

On the wires

Hypur Brings Nationwide Payments Solution to Cannabis Consumers and Merchants


Hypur, Inc. announced that its reliable and secure electronic payment solution is now available for state legal marijuana-related businesses (MRBs) throughout the United States. Through its compliance technology, point-of-sale integrations, and payment solutions capabilities, Hypur provides complete transparency to the cannabis payments process. Hypur enables consumers to purchase products from their local dispensaries while also allowing MRBs to process business-to-business (B2B) payments.”

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