Located next door to technology pioneers the likes of Stripe, Uber, Square, Twitter and Airbnb, two companies are joining forces to lead the charge in a seismically disruptive tech trend that’s revolutionizing the cannabis industry.
One of the most trusted and longstanding therapeutic cannabis collectives in San Francisco, ReLeaf Herbal Cooperative, is forging a new partnership with Alt Thirty Six. Using blockchain technology to bring the cannabis industry into the 21st century, Alt Thirty Six will enable ReLeaf Herbal to offer an easy-to-use and compliant digital payment option for cannabis purchases in the SOMA District.
Alt Thirty Six CoFounder and CEO Ken Ramirez summed up the issues dispensaries face and why this trend is such a gamechanger:
“Today, economists estimate that only 8 percent of the world’s currency exists in physical cash. The rest is digital. User-friendly payment services that use blockchain technology are the future. We’re working in partnership with ReLeaf Herbal Cooperative to remove the regulatory shackles holding the cannabis industry back.”
While the passing of the SAFE (Secure and Fair Enforcement) Banking Act would be a milestone for the cannabis industry, all the credit and debit card networks have internal policies that will continue to forbid cannabis-related transactions.
The card networks (VISA, MasterCard, Discover, AmEx) have yet to create a sanctioned category for these transactions. Therefore, any cannabis-related business accepting credit or debit card payments is exposing their business to potential regulatory risks and bankrupting fines.
This has forced legitimate merchants to run cash-only businesses, an expensive and dangerous proposition. ReLeaf Herbal Cooperative Founder and CEO Heidi Hanley voiced the struggle many merchants go through:
“The requirement to have a cash-only business has slowed our operational capacity down to a snail’s pace and cut into our profit margins. Our partnership with Alt Thirty Six is going to save a tremendous amount of time, money, hassle and worry. We don’t have to stress over whether we’re compliant or not. Alt Thirty Six makes moving money easy so we can move more product.”
As one of the few compliant payment solutions in this industry, Alt Thirty Six invests significantly in building out a robust compliance program, obtaining licenses in every operating state and consulting compliance experts. This technology upgrade will allow merchants, suppliers and vendors to process and receive payments at nearly real-time speed.
SOURCE Alt Thirty Six