Cannabis wholesale marketplace and logistics platform Wayv has launched a new payments option, powered by Hypur, to help improve transparency, speed, and predictability in business-to-business cannabis transactions. Payments are a logical next step for Wayv as it seeks to provide an Amazon-like, end-to-end service that includes financing, wholesale, and logistics for cannabis retailers, growers, manufacturers, and distributors.
“Businesses will no longer be beholden to inefficient and unpredictable payments with WAYV as the industry’s facilitator and partner,” Wayv CEO and founder Keith McCarty said in a statement. “We provide a turnkey solution that is the most efficient, least costly way to exchange capital and products throughout California.”
Wayv's new offering relies on ACH transactions ー essentially an electronic check ー and next-day wire services that create a credit card-like experience for customers. The service integrates with as many as 12,500 banks and provides a dashboard to help customers track and manage their payments, invoices, and security to improve on transparency and timeliness ー and of course to cut down on cash.
"With Wayv payments, we provide customers with complete transparency and a dashboard that lets them know what payments are due," said McCarty, who also co-founded cannabis delivery platform Eaze. "We are an intermediary providing real-time data back-and-forth, and notifications and alerts that point back to the dashboard."
Although 11 states and D.C. have legalized recreational cannabis and 33 have legalized medical, U.S. policy hasn't caught on. That means finding banking services is an ongoing challenge for businesses dealing in a still federally illegal industry. The result is that many banks and credit card processors don't want to deal with headache or consequences that can come with serving cannabis companies. While a majority of business have found workarounds, many still deal mainly in cash and must rely on high-risk processors, which can be buggy and expensive. In the absence of more formal means to relieve these problems, a crop of payments solutions, like the one offered by Wayv and Hypur, have popped up to fill the void.
But significant bipartisan support is galvanizing behind measures like SAFE Banking, which seek to offer protection for banks that serve cannabis businesses in legal states. Should SAFE Banking pass into law, McCarty and Hypur's chief revenue officer Tyler Beuerlein said it will only strengthen their position.
"Anything that promotes or streamlines payments, that provides for visibility around the reception of payments, is a good thing for Wayv," McCarty said. "When the SAFE Banking Act is passed, I still think there will be a myriad of things that need to pass before we get to the level of what we are providing, because it isn't just banking, it's about payment processing, as well, and all the things that come along with that."
Wayv saw payments as a natural next step in its goal to provide end-to-end marketplace, logistics and financing solutions. The announcement comes on the heels of the September launch of its Dynamic Distribution network to connect brands, retailers, and distributors, and streamline B2B supply chain logistics.
As for Hypur, partnerships like the one with Wayv are par for the course. A leader in business-to-consumer electronic transactions, Hypur has a presence in about 20 states and is growing, partly thanks to partnerships like these that grant the company access to new types of customers. Although Hypur has partnered in the past with companies like Leaf Logix and the MJPlatform from Akerna, Wayv is its first partnership on the wholesale side.
"The benefit for us is that our network expands dramatically with a partner we believe in, that will be there in the end," Beuerlein said. "We are helping set the standard for how the industry can and should be banked."