October 9, 2015
We had the pleasure of discussing this emerging trend with Ben Curren, the CEO of Greenbits. When we asked about his experience at the Startup Battlefield, he said, The main reason to enter the TCDisrupt Startup Battlefield was to get in front of venture capitalists and make them understand that the industry we work in is legal and bring them to invest in this market.
Greenbits works with government agencies like Liquor Control Board and Marijuana Enforcement Division, Colorado. Greenbits is a bridge between government and store owners. While talking about the problems associated with the cannabis industry, Ben added, The risk that most companies are worried about is their name being associated with marijuana because it comes from the black market. Lot of venture capitalists are nervous about the cannabis vertical. We wanted to get in front of major venture capitalists but we wanted to prove our credibility. Even at TCDisrupt when I started saying cannabis, the judges were being skeptical, but when I talked about what we are doing at GreenBits, they probably started changing their perception about the industry.
Greenbits, headquartered in California, deployed their first marijuana POS in July 2014. By end of 2014, they had only 15 POS installations. By 2015, they will have 45% of Washington’s marijuana market.
Other FinTech solutions offered in the marijuana industry include online ordering, POS, inventory management and loyalty programs from WebJoint, a PyroTree Inc. company launched recently in 2015. Founded in 2010, MJFreeway is a company that offers solutions like payment terminal hardware and an inventory management platform for marijuana retailers. Jane is another financial services technology company focused on standardizing the transparency & compliance requirements of marijuana retailers. It offers a physical kiosk that enables simpler cash management for marijuana retailers. It also offer POS integrations, dashboard reports and analytics to the retailers. DispenseFirst is a POS solution for the Medical Cannabis industry that fully integrates POS, inventory control, employee and patient management, and back office accounting across one application.