10 Banks That Accept CBD Businesses and Give Loans in 2022
Do you run a CBD business that needs certain banking services? If YES, here is a list of 10 CBD friendly banks that accept CBD businesses and give them loans. With the cannabis industry gradually attracting more attention and entrepreneurs, there is a growing demand for CBD business loans.
3 Types of Loans Available to CBD Businesses
- Bridge Loans
- Merchant Cash Advance
- Private Loans
Table of Content
a. Bridge Loans
It’s very important to state that there are various kinds of loans available to cannabis entrepreneurs. There are Bridge loans that are also called “gap financing”, “swing loans”, or “interim financing”. These are short-term loans a company can leverage on while awaiting permanent financing solutions.
These loans allow businesses to meet immediate financial obligations but they typically have high interest rates. These loans require collateral in most cases. The money can be used for rent, inventory, utilities, working capital, and other expenses that a business needs to cover quickly.
b. Merchant Cash Advance
The second kind of CBD loan is known as a merchant cash advance. Merchant cash advance is technically not a loan. It is a funding that is advanced to a merchant based on upcoming credit card and business debit transactions. Cash advances are short-term funding solutions that can provide extra working capital to sustain a business through challenging financial situations but doesn’t provide a permanent funding source.
c. Private / Alternative Loans
The third kind of CBD loan is called a Private/Alternative Loans. Non-bank lenders are the most common funding sources for CBD business loans and other types of weed loans commonly sought after within the cannabis industry. These private lenders all have their own requirements for applicants. It’s important to research these requirements before applying for a loan.
This bank’s overall commitment to innovation in its mission statement means that it will lower barriers of entry for entrepreneurs in areas where other banks won’t. More than likely, Silicon Valley Bank will provide CBD merchants its science and healthcare industry services, since the bank qualifies CBD as a wellness product. Also, they regularly publish a public policy report to inform government officials of what is needed to better serve their clients’ interests.
2. Timberland Bank
Timberland Bank is known as one of the few banks that offer its services to the cannabis industry. Even so, it’s difficult to tell. Unlike its credit union counterparts, this Washington based bank doesn’t appear to advertise its involvement in the cannabis industry.
But according to Timberland’s SEC filings, the 22-branch bank which has been in operation since 1915 is definitely open for business. The files show that the bank’s operations with the industry may be responsible for an uptick in its business, but it also comes at the price of increasing service charges.
3. Chase Bank
Chase Bank opened its business platform for CBD-related bank accounts, but will not offer its payment processing services just yet. More than likely, Chase will wait for the SAFE Banking Act or some other CBD financial services-enabling bill that will make the industry less precarious. Resourceful due to its size, Chase will also most likely wait for data to aggregate on what successful CBD companies look like in order to properly vet potential clients in the future.
4. The Salal Credit Union
Salal credit union out of Seattle received thousands of calls when the news broke that they were accepting cannabis accounts. Largely working within the medical industry, Salal has opened around 300 cannabis accounts since 2014. They offer all the basic services, including tax services as well as insurance and even international wire transfers.
Salal’s regulations include the basic requirements of being licensed within the state, good credit, and no outstanding taxes. Salal requires 10 days to do the necessary background checks on a business, which is much longer than regular accounts, but they do provide services to both Washington and Oregon.
North Bay Credit Union is one of the only American banking institutions publicly admitting to handling transactions for cannabis companies, which they do confidentially for companies located in areas north of San Francisco. The credit union limits the size of the deposits that these companies can make in order to manage their capital ratio. Still, North Bay Credit Union risks federal prosecution for handling these transactions — still illegal under federal law — but serves their clients in spite of those risks.
6. The Numerica Credit Union
Numerica is renowned as one of the first financial institutions in the country to work with the industry, having opened cannabis accounts as early as 2014. Since then, they have opened more than 200 accounts. They offer all the basic services including wire transfers and direct-deposit for employees, but also have a team dedicated to cannabis business accounts.
Note that they only serve businesses within communities where Numerica branches operate, namely, the state of Washington. So, if you’re looking to open an account from out of state (or even out of town) you won’t be able to access their services. Finally, they require businesses to be licensed and approved by their community – a roadblock many dispensaries have encountered.
7. The MAPS Credit Union
Reports have it that MAPS opened its doors to the cannabis industry almost by accident. As the credit union’s VP of operations told the Statesman Journal, Maps discovered they had cannabis accounts in 2014, before the company even officially accepted them.
At that point, the Oregon credit union had to make a choice. So, they decided to stick with their customers and have opened more than 100 accounts ever since, but those accounts also come with some strings.
MAPS monitors every transaction closely and sets an annual inspection of their business, which is a mandatory part of maintaining an account. A failure to schedule that inspection on time can result in the closing of the account. All that extra work means that an account with MAPS costs a $250 application fee as well as another $250 annually.
8. Partner Colorado CU
This Colorado credit union not only accepts cannabis accounts, its CEO postponed her retirement to set up a program to teach others in the industry how to do it. Partner began accepting canna-customers as of July 2017 through a program they call Safe Harbor.
The company’s CEO Sundie Seefried was on the verge of retirement when she discovered that most of the cannabis industry operates on cash. As a result, she decided to continue working with Partner and focused on providing assistance to businesses that want to leave cash behind.
How to Get Loans for a CBD Business and the Challenges to Expect
First, you have to understand that the 2018 Farm Bill did not fully legalize all forms of CBD nationwide. CBD can be derived from hemp, a non-psychoactive variety of the Cannabis Sativa plant. The main difference between hemp and marijuana is that hemp contains very little THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) (0.3%), the psychoactive component of marijuana.
This makes regulating hemp very tricky, since it is virtually identical to marijuana in appearance, smell, and even taste. When it comes to securing a business loan for a cannabis company there are some things to consider outside of the normal lending parameters.
Traditional lenders aren’t all-in just yet, so it usually requires non-traditional money and even with that, there are some things to consider. Note that even with hard money or asset-backed loans and the high interest rates that come with them, most lenders in this industry thread with enormous caution, even in states where it is legal.
In the current state of the economy, beggars can’t be choosers. If a cannabis company needs a loan, they must go where options exist, and it isn’t going to be the neighborhood bank down the street. Even the high-rate credit card processing backed loans are hard to secure, as some cannabis companies are having their merchant accounts shut down.
The CBD industry is just very new, so you have to be ready for limited options along with high fees and rates. There aren’t clear and defined laws and rules laid out that apply to everyone. Until that happens there will continue to be a shortage of funding and loan options for any business tied to cannabis.
There is a lot of uncertainty when it comes to production and availability in the CBD industry. There is very little upsides for a bank to lend to a cannabis company. Even at high rates there is still risk. Even though CBD containing no THC is legal, there are some states that will not allow it to be shipped to them.
So this is also a reason for concern. What happens if banks start lending more freely to CBD companies and then the government steps in and shuts some down for selling across borders? Then what?
Even though the perception is that CBD is legal everywhere, but there are still a lot of confusing details and circumstances. Big banks don’t want anything to do with it just yet. But, once it’s legal everywhere with no limitations and no stipulations, they are all going to want to get in on the action.
Also, although, banks and lenders have seen hundreds of thousands business plans, anything related to cannabis is new to them. It’s hard to underwrite a business loan when you don’t fully understand the business plan. Will these banks finally understand it and come up with more standard underwriting guidelines? Of course, but that will be until cannabis is fully legal and regulated.
The enormous amount of inconsistent information on cannabis business loans is difficult to digest. Unfortunately, for as much information there is to explain why cannabis business loans don’t exist, there are just as few opportunities to access cannabis business funding. But irrespective of how the industry is now, the surrounding legal intricacies around cannabis business loans are constantly shifting.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Banks Accept CBD Business Accounts?
The banks that accept CBD business accounts are;
- Silicon Valley Bank
- Timberland Bank
- Chase Bank
- The Salal Credit Union
- North Bay Credit Union
- The Numerica Credit Union
- The MAPS Credit Union
- Partner Colorado CU
Can CBD Companies Use Banks?
Despite the fact that hemp is federally legal and banks are cleared to take on clients, hemp-CBD companies find themselves in an undefined legal bucket. That’s because CBD is still under investigation by the FDA for safety concerns and is technically not allowed in ingestible products until guidance has been issued.
What Is A CBD Merchant Account?
A CBD merchant account is simply a merchant account that allows you to accept credit card payments, but has been approved by your provider for selling CBD-derived products.
Can Banks Do Business With CBD Companies?
Yes, but if you run a CBD business, it could be considered a marijuana-related business (MRB). With any MRB, banking institutions must subject you to enhanced scrutiny for risk assessment. Please note that it seems difficult or even impossible to prove from which part of the plant a particular CBD product was made (labelling notwithstanding).
What Do CBD Businesses Need From The Bank?
CBD businesses need loans and investment from banks. Investing in CBD oil has enjoyed increased popularity over the last few years. Over the last few years, this has led to a significant uptick in the number of people viewing CBD oil as an investment opportunity. Many have seen a great return on their investment with steady growth as the market continues to expand.
What Is A Virtual Bank Account With IBAN?
A virtual IBAN (International Bank Account Number), or vIBAN, is a phantom current account issued by a bank that permits the account holder to receive an incoming payment and reroute it to a real bank account.
Does Square Accept CBD Payments?
Square currently allows sellers in the EAP to accept payments for hemp and hemp-derived CBD products that have less than, or equal to, 0.3 percent THC in most states within the United States.
How Do You Process CBD Payments?
There are four main processing options for CBD brands:
- Domestic Credit Card Processing
- Domestic E-Check
- Offshore Credit Card Processing
- Payment Terminals
Does PayPal Work With CBD Companies?
As reflected in their Acceptable Use Policy, PayPal currently does not permit the use of their payments platform for the sale of products containing Cannabidiol (CBD).
Why Is It Important To Have A CBD Merchant Account?
It is important to have a CBD merchant account because CBD merchant accounts allow, for instance, a CBD business to accept credit cards or other forms of electronic payment.
What Exactly Is A Merchant Account?
A merchant account is a bank account specifically established for business purposes where companies can make and accept payments. A merchant account serves as an intermediary between customers’ bank accounts and your business’s bank account as electronic payments, including credit card transactions, are processed.
Does PayPal Accept Payments For CBD Products?
As reflected in their Acceptable Use Policy, PayPal currently does not permit the use of their payments platform for the sale of products containing Cannabidiol (CBD).
How Quickly Can You Set Up Business Banking For CBD?
Although it can take 15 minutes to apply for an account online, it will normally take up to 4 weeks to complete the process of opening a new company bank account.
How Much Do You Need To Start A CBD Business?
Although the amount needed to start a CBD business may vary depending on location, niche and whether you open a physical shop or an online shop, you will need at least $5,000 up front to get up and running with your own CBD outlet.
What Are Some Of The Pressing Banking Issues Faced By The CBD Industry?
There’s a popular misconception that the 2018 Farm Bill made CBD “legal,” and therefore the still-prevailing banking restrictions seem contradictory. The actual effect of the legislation was to remove hemp and hemp-derived products, including CBD, from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA)’s narcotic drug schedule, transferring oversight to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) as a regulated agricultural crop and the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) for products intended for human or animal consumption.
However, the legal confusion arises from the fact that hemp and its derivative products are now considered a regulated agricultural crop, without a regulatory framework yet in place.
How Long Does It Take To Obtain A Compliant CBD Banking Account With Fincann?
You can obtain a compliant CBD banking account with Fincann as soon as possible. Please note that as a Fincann client, you will be introduced to banking partners that welcome your marijuana, CBD and hemp-related business without workarounds, guises, or the constant worry that you’ll lose your banking relationship.
How Much Does Business Banking Cost?
Generally, most banks will waive the business account monthly maintenance fee (ranging from about $12-20 per month among major banks) if you maintain a minimum balance.
Is The CBD Industry Growing?
Yes, the CBD industry is growing rapidly in recent years. As a matter of fact, the global market for cannabidiol (CBD), valued at $9.3billion in 2020, is forecasted to reach $23.6bn in revenue by 2025. With an expected compound annual growth rate of 22.2 percent from 2019 to 2025, the future is looking incredibly promising for businesses tapping into CBD’s explosive popularity
CBD products are flying off the shelves — so why are banks so reluctant to offer financing?
While a majority of states have legalized or decriminalized recreational marijuana use, and the 2018 Farm Bill gave legal status to growers and sellers of hemp, cannabis is still classified as a Schedule I drug at the federal level — which means most financial services providers won’t do business with marijuana-related ventures.
However, a California visit last week by Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., raised hopes among marijuana and CBD purveyors that access to mainstream financial services could be coming.
Although it doesn’t contain tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive compound in marijuana, many sellers of wellness products incorporating cannabidiol (CBD) have found themselves entangled in the same morass.
“This is never something I thought would be the biggest challenge I would face,” said Brooke Alpert, registered dietitian and cannabis practitioner, and founder of Daily Habit, which develops and sells CBD powder. “I didn’t think how challenging simply opening a bank account would be,” she said.
Alpert said she had expected the Farm Bill passage to clear the way for businesses like hers, but found that even hemp’s newly legal status didn’t do enough to conquer the association with THC and pot. “We were very honest that we were working with CBD, and everybody turned us down,” she said, adding that there are benefits as well as drawbacks to being associated with marijuana. “CBD that’s made from industrial hemp is not the same as pot,” she said. “Sometimes it’s frustrating to get lumped in there, but in other ways it’s an amazing community to be a part of,” she said. “The more that we do to get the word of CBD out there, it’s going to reduce the stigma.”
Eventually, Alpert said, she was able to secure a business account with a bank whose branch manager used CBD oil. “I think we lucked out,” she said.
Help could be on the way. Last month, the Democrat-led House of Representatives passed the Secure And Fair Enforcement (SAFE) Banking Act, legislation that would give financial institutions working with cannabis businesses a safe harbor from prosecution. As the Senate majority leader, McConnell’s interest gave industry participants hope that the roadblocks preventing them from accessing mainstream financial services could be cleared if the chamber takes up the House bill.
“One of the things that benefits this debate is that hemp companies and CBD companies are also having a tough time getting banking, and those things are legal. Creating some better clarity around all of this stuff will make it better for everybody,” said Troy Dayton, CEO and co-founder of cannabis investment and market research firm Arcview Group.
But even those bullish on the cannabis industry acknowledge that winning enough bipartisan support to clear a GOP-led Senate won’t be easy, especially with the impeachment imbroglio overshadowing other political priorities.
I’d love to see it and I’m hopeful that it passes, but I’m not optimistic,” said Micah Tapman, chairman of cannabis market research firm BDS Analytics, adding that there is “massive growth potential” for the industry once legal barriers are eliminated.
“It passed the House, but it’s a Republican-dominated Senate, so I’m putting it at 50-50 that it’s going to pass,” said Tony Bautista, former treasurer of a regional California cannabis trade association and founder and CEO of Ganiyan, a CBD company.
Bautista, whose company makes and sells single use “k-cup” pods of non-THC-containing hemp, along with smoking devices, called his experiences with banks “beyond frustrating.” After being turned down by numerous institutions, Bautista said he eventually found one willing to let him open a business account because he uses the hemp flower, as opposed to extracting the CBD.
But getting a bank account is only the first challenge for cannabis-related companies. How to manage payments is another hurdle both marijuana and CBD companies must clear. Even in legal states, the pot business is a cash-dominated one. Advocates for banking reform say cannabis dispensaries struggle to find workarounds to issues like paying taxes and handling large amounts of cash securely.
For purveyors of CBD products, particularly online businesses without a physical storefront, being able to accept credit cards is a critical business function. “On the day-to-day side, the biggest problem is merchant services credit card processing,” Tapman said. “It’s a real impediment to not be able to swipe your credit card.”
Alpert experienced this when her merchant processor abruptly shut its doors last spring, leaving her unable to process customer payments for a number of weeks. “It’s not great for business to have all these stops and starts, especially a new business like us,” she said. “It’s really bad for the flow of business. It’s really hard to project what we’re going to do. We can’t estimate sales,” she said. Worse yet, the abrupt shutdown of her former payments vendor has made it difficult for Alpert to get access to those funds.
"It’s a heavy cost to bear for many of the small businesses in this space. It increases the cost of doing business, because companies have to have two or three banks.”
One option available for these kinds of companies is ACH or electronic checks, but Alpert worried that customers wouldn’t be willing to provide their bank account and routing numbers online.
Bautista also has struggled to find a way to process online transactions seamlessly. When he tried to open a merchant account with the bank through which he had a business account, he was told that that wasn’t allowed — unless his business was extraction, the exact opposite of the rules governing his existing account.
Bautista said he tried and failed to work through the discrepancy. “It didn’t matter how logical I was with them,” he said. For now, he relies on the ACH process, but like Alpert, he worries that this makes the purchase process more complicated and dissuades customers. “How many people know their routing number?” he said.
“This is a common issue, and it’s a heavy cost to bear for many of the small businesses in this space,” Dayton said. “It increases the cost of doing business [because] companies have to have two or three banks.”
Loans are another big area of concern. Much of the funding that powers industry growth comes from venture capital investment, a high-priced source of capital, Tapman said. “The biggest problem is access to growth capital, and that’s simply loans. These companies are paying mid-teens rates or selling equity, which is a very expensive way to finance your business,” he said.
Bautista said he borrowed against the equity in his home for start-up capital, but the first lender yanked his line of credit when it found out that his business was hemp-related. He has since sought out a second lender, but said the cost of the time and labor involved adds up.
“There’s a desire for loans,” Dayton said, expressing optimism that the SAFE Act will pass and trigger a flood of business-building pent-up demand. “When banking passes, I think that starts to open up more access to capital,” he said.
Martha C. White is an NBC News contributor who writes about business, finance and the economy.
CBD Retail &
Solutions with Fincann
CBD brands and businesses often find it difficult to obtain compliant, sustainable, and stable banking services. Interestingly, it’s often more challenging to find a CBD-friendly bank than a THC-licensee-friendly one since banks feel that at least are established guidelines for banking cannabis whereas there are few to none for CBD. However, the false impression remains that it’s easy for CBD businesses to access these accounts.
What are some of the pressing banking issues faced by the CBD industry?
Many folks both in and out of the industry believed that with the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill by the U.S. Congress in December 2018 that banking and payment processing for CBD enterprises would quickly become a non-issue. However, though it’s been some time since the Farm Bill passed, Fincann receives a continuous stream of inquiries from hemp and CBD companies seeking simple, transparent, compliant business checking accounts after being turned away from all the banks they’ve contacted.
There’s a popular misconception that the 2018 Farm Bill made CBD “legal,” and therefore the still-prevailing banking restrictions seem contradictory. The actual effect of the legislation was to remove hemp and hemp-derived products, including CBD, from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA)’s narcotic drug schedule, transferring oversight to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) as a regulated agricultural crop and the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) for products intended for human or animal consumption. However, the legal confusion arises from the fact that hemp and its derivative products are now considered a regulated agricultural crop, without a regulatory framework yet in place.
The USDA has mandated that individual states develop their own hemp regulatory programs and submit those programs for their approval. This process is well underway. Meanwhile, the FDA has made it more clear than any products containing CBD intended for human or animal consumption must be approved. To date, they have officially only approved one clinically tested pharmaceutical containing CBD: Epidiolex. They have clearly-published guidance that until approved, the sale and interstate commerce of CBD products for human or animal consumption are prohibited, as is product packaging or advertisements making any claim of health benefits or medical efficacy. However, they have also informally stated that they lacked both the resources and inclination to prosecute CBD commerce so long as the medical and health prohibition is observed.
Unofficially, they are considering CBD topicals to be a “cosmetic” and therefore not unapproved for retail sale and manufacturing. Although specific guidelines are still in the works, especially in regards to labeling, disclosure and testing, both major retailers are openly selling and many banks now accept these business customers while still barring CBD in ingestibles, foods and smokeables. Note that many states and municipalities mirror the same guidelines. Add to this the fact that many states have varying standards of what is legal and permissible in their state, the regulatory framework is patchy at best.
Do CBD companies face similar issues obtaining payment processing?
Companies seeking payment processing solutions experience similar frustration. We were all relieved and elated when US Bank merchant services subsidiary Elavon began onboarding CBD merchants in late 2018 with reasonable pricing and next-day settlement, but when it began apparent that they had jumped in before carefully studying and resolving serious legal and compliance issues, they were obliged to exit the sector in April 2019. This left thousands of merchants without viable alternatives. And of course their exit had a chilling effect on worthy competitors now obliged to reconsider their plans to enter the market.
Contrary to popular understanding, bankers — including banks essential to supporting merchant processing — are not restrained from serving our industry due to the tension between conflicting state and federal laws. Their ‘mainstream conservative’ boards generally still consider marijuana and related products and services to be a disreputable trade that they do not wish to be associated with. While it’s true that the needle of acceptance has moved glacially toward more tolerance and acceptability over the past couple of years, especially in hemp and medical cannabis, banking and merchant processing remains elusive to this day.