The partnership will consist of an “integration of AeroPay’s payments platform into Blackbird’s white-labeled dispensary menus and the BlackbirdGo cannabis marketplace,” the release stated. Blackbird customers will have access to an online pre-pay option for ordering items for delivery or curbside pickup.
The payments made with AeroPay will then be funneled through a secure bank-to-bank transfer between customers and the business, the release stated.
Because of the cannabis industry’s federal illegal status, taking traditional card payments isn’t possible for most businesses. Many major banks don’t work with cannabis businesses for that reason, too, the release stated. These factors lead most businesses to transact primarily in cash — a fact that presents long-term issues for these companies.
The Blackbird and AeroPay relationship is one of the partnerships trying to change that. AeroPay CEO and Founder Daniel Muller said in the release that the partnership came about because both companies “want to give cannabis businesses the ability to operate in the same manner as any other business would.”
“Cash payments have dominated the cannabis retail consumer experience until now,” said Tim Conder, CEO and co-founder of Blackbird, according to the release. “As licensed cannabis operators, we know the benefits of moving toward cashless payments but also understand the challenges with banking as a cannabis business. Our partnership with AeroPay and the integration of our platforms allows our retail partners and their customers to easily accept digital payments and remove the hurdles associated with being a cash only business. Additionally, AeroPay’s banking relationships will help eliminate barriers for our retail partners.”
The two companies are also working together to develop efficient solutions for cannabis physical retail and B2B, the release stated.