West Town Bank & Trust launches dedicated cannabis banking program
The program aims to make financial services, such as banking and electronic payments, more accessible to cannabis businesses nationwide.
RALEIGH, NC, April 20, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — West Town Bank & Trust, a bank with a mission to make financial services more accessible to emerging and underserved industries, announces the launch of its dedicated cannabis banking program. The program provides the cannabis industry with safe, convenient and modern financial tools, enabling businesses to operate more efficiently and reduce the risks associated with running a cash-intensive business.
Due to federal regulations, cannabis businesses currently have difficulty accessing reliable financial products, forcing many businesses to operate without bank accounts or electronic payments. Others go to third-party intermediaries who partner with FDIC-insured banks behind closed doors. The lack of reliable financial services is holding back the potential for growth, profitability and increased consumer confidence.
As one of the first banks to roll out a hemp banking program after the 2018 Farm Bill, we have seen firsthand the role that dedicated banking programs have played in advancing the entire industry.
Ross Sloan, West Town Bank & Trust Senior Vice President of Hemp and Cannabis Banking
We are excited to do the same for cannabis businesses, providing them with the banking services they need to fuel not just their growth, but the growth of the entire cannabis industry.
West Town Bank & Trust’s banking program offers a full suite of financial services products to cannabis businesses and their ancillary partners. Cannabis businesses will have access to business checking accounts, electronic payment options, and more. With an in-house team comprised entirely of certified cannabis bankers, regulatory compliance is the cornerstone of the Bank’s cannabis banking program.
Mel Barnes, Hemp and Cannabis Program Manager at West Town Bank & Trust, believes that the Bank’s existing framework and successful track record in hemp will raise the standard for cannabis-related financial services:
Legal cannabis businesses should be able to access the same financial services as other industries. Using our in-house industry expertise, as well as technology partners such as RiskScout, we’ve built a robust online onboarding and due diligence infrastructure that allows customers to access the services they need while feeling safe. with their financial partner.
Mel Barnes, Hemp and Cannabis Program Manager at West Town Bank & Trust
This same infrastructure has provided the opportunity to effectively scale our hemp program and we are delighted to have the support of our Board of Directors and leadership team to fully commit to serving the cannabis market.
West Town Bank & Trust’s Cannabis Banking Program is now accepting applications for www.westtownbank.com/cannabis-banking.
ABOUT WEST TOWN BANK & TRUST | Founded in 1922, West Town Bank & Trust provides tailored financial solutions to emerging and underserved industries. The Bank was one of the first to provide a full range of commercial banking services to hemp-related businesses when it launched its dedicated hemp program in 2019. West Town Bank & Trust’s new cannabis banking program inaugurates the next chapter in accessibility to financial services for players in the cannabis industry.
The Cannabis Banking team is made up of seven financial services professionals, all certified for banking cannabis businesses. The Bank’s cannabis bankers currently serve on the Cannabis Financial Institutions Group of the National Cannabis Roundtable, an advocacy group dedicated to developing solutions to the cannabis industry’s most pressing challenges.
West Town Bank & Trust is licensed in North Riverside, Illinois and maintains operations in Raleigh, North Carolina.