LAS VEGAS – Valley Bank’s new payment platform will address the global financial crisis plaguing cannabis-related businesses by providing customers with a mobile wallet payment system, the bank’s digital product officer Stuart Cook told Bank Div. At the Money20 / 20 Conference Tuesday.

The nationally chartered bank, which has $ 41 billion in New Jersey, New York, Florida and Alabama branches, serves five multicultural cannabis business operators, Cook said.

The so-called Valley Pay is expected to launch a pilot program in the coming months.

The mobile app is similar to a Starbuck bag gift card that can be reloaded, Cook said.

“It’s a trademark, and it provides a lot of economic benefits to the trader, in terms of the cost of the transactions,” he said. “It also builds other general benefits in building loyalty and marketing solutions.”

He said customers can withdraw the card from their existing bank account and provide a QR code when selling.

“Its beauty is a real-time load, and it’s real-time money for the trader. So we’re solving a lot of problems in the payment process,” Cook said.

Valley Bank is launching a forum in collaboration with an anonymous “big processor”, Cook said.

Valley Bank has been using cannabis for a year and has built a service and compliance system that transports and saves large amounts of cash collected by service providers on a daily basis.

Although the number of states legalizing cannabis is increasing, the federal standard of Schedule 1 means that most banks and major credit card issuers do not open accounts or conduct transactions on the spot.

“With the explosion of legitimacy in the states, there are some big businesses with special banking interests. They are below the banks, they don’t provide enough services and they are ashes. There is only money everywhere,” said Cook, adding one of Valley Bank’s cannabis customers. More than a million dollars a day. “There is a lot of unforeseen demand in these businesses to digitalize payments to make money out of business.”

Eliminating the industry’s dependence on cash is not just a matter of security for cannabis distributors, Cook said.

“It’s also about consumer interest. They don’t want to take a lot of money or make these transactions in cash,” he said.

The right size

The size of the Valley Bank is key to rapid innovation and the ability to create products that serve convenient locations such as cannabis, Cook said.

“We are good enough to do something big and we are big enough to do something small,” he said. “The wallet we built – we go to a pilot next month with a trader. And this is from concept to start, less than six months. We were able to go here quickly to understand the needs of traders. And consumers have that.”

The purpose of Valley Bank is to see the Valley Payment accepted by every major multi-state cannabis operator.

“I think it’s a great opportunity to grow our bank, our deposits and our assets here,” Cook said. I think, what he does, this shows that with the right bank partner, you can solve some long-standing problems in this space.

In the future, the bank hopes to address issues that balance the valley’s ability to serve small mothers and pop-type traders, Cook said.

“We start with adults and then we want to measure it,” he said.

Cook Valley says it expects the payment to give the bank a unique look in the cannabis supply chain.

“So we know a lot at the marketing level, and we have a vision from seed to sale, and I think that will open up a lot of exciting financial products for those businesses. We’ve done some early attempts to help. Businesses will cover their growth,” Cook said. I hope we can do more to understand the sector and the business.

Convenient bank

One year ago, the bank decided to start serving the cannabis sector by targeting markets. The Bank operates businesses in the healthcare sector, commercial real estate and ownership associations.

“There are a lot of reinforcements in the banking market today – you buy or sell or you buy and you grow,” Cook said. “And the interesting idea that we discussed, especially how can we help businesses grow? We can’t really be a bank that serves everyone, we have to think about where we could really serve. Those markets. We were looking for different places, and cannabis was fun for us.”