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Blackbird and AeroPay Announce Strategic Collaboration

By CIOReview | Monday, January 25, 2021

Dispensary patients and consumers who shop from the Blackbird white-labeled menu or the BlackbirdGo marketplace will have the option of paying with AeroPay.

FREMONT, CA: Blackbird, a cannabis software and logistics provider, and AeroPay, a major financial services company offering payment processing systems to the cannabis sector, have announced a strategic alliance to introduce cashless payments to cannabis firms for online ordering. The collaboration involves incorporating AeroPay's payment network into Blackbird's white-labeled pharmacy menus and the BlackbirdGo cannabis marketplace. The two firms are now aiming to add greater efficiency to other cannabis supply chain areas, such as physical retail and B2B.

Through the incorporation, cannabis patients and consumers using Blackbird will be able to pre-pay electronically at the time of check-out for distribution or on-site pick-up orders. Payments made with AeroPay would be enabled by a safe bank-to-bank transfer between the patient or the client and the company.

"Cash payments have dominated the cannabis retail consumer experience until now," said Tim Conder, CEO, and Co-Founder, Blackbird. "As licensed cannabis operators, we know the benefits of moving toward cashless payments but also understand the challenges with banking as a cannabis business. Our partnership with AeroPay and the integration of our platforms allows our retail partners and their customers to easily accept digital payments and remove the hurdles associated with being a cash only business. Additionally, AeroPay's banking relationships will help eliminate barriers for our retail partners."

Traditional card purchases are not possible for cannabis business owners, and most big banks are resisting funding cannabis businesses because of the industry's federally prohibited status. This forces cannabis companies and their customers to trade almost exclusively in cash. AeroPay's compliant approach provides a convenient, easy and seamless way for patients or consumers to pay for their preferred cannabis company.

"We're excited about the future of our partnership with AeroPay as both companies have the ability to service the entire value chain," said Conder. "This is only the beginning of a long-term relationship that has the opportunity to change the way cannabis businesses operate."

Dispensary patients and consumers who shop from the Blackbird white-labeled menu or the BlackbirdGo marketplace will have the option of paying with AeroPay. For the first time AeroPay customers, the sign-up process is two simple steps and takes place immediately on the menu at the time of check-out by merely building an AeroPay account and connecting their bank. Payment may be made with a single click for repeat customers.

"Our approach has always been to create a better payment experience for both businesses and their customers," said Daniel Muller, CEO, and Founder, AeroPay. "Blackbird is a premier end-to-end logistics and delivery company in the cannabis space and our partnership allows us to do just that for the cannabis industry."

Although the focus of this integration with Blackbird's menus is on optimizing retail and customer engagement, both Blackbird and AeroPay have B2B solutions for the cannabis industry. Companies aim to streamline the cannabis experience in other areas of the supply chain and reduce the amount of cash by digital payments.

"Payments have been especially inconvenient for cannabis businesses and we are thrilled to work with the team at Blackbird to create a seamless cannabis shopping experience that is safer, faster, and cashless," said Muller. "Ultimately, we want to give cannabis businesses the ability to operate in the same manner as any other business would."