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A Story About Two Dispensary Owners

There are two cannabis dispensaries in a city.

They are both owner operated with a great selection of cannabis products. They both have competitive prices, great atmospheres, and are in prime locations. But that’s where the similarities end.

Let’s look a little closer…


John is struggling.

He is overworked and underpaid and rarely takes a day off.  John spends too much time counting and hiding money in his all cash operation.  John has had several merchant accounts over the years; however, they were all closed down.  John was miscoding his business (providing fraudulent information to the credit card processor) in order to have access to a cannabis merchant account.  What makes matters even worse is when John was found out by the merchant services provider they not only closed his account but held all outstanding settlements. It will be 180 days until John gets those funds back if he does. John’s account was closed on a Monday so he lost access to all his settlements from cannabis sales from Thursday through Sunday.  John lost a lot of money.

John also had an ATM machine that suddenly quit working just the week before.  The acquiring bank associated with his ATM provider found out that John was loading the machine with cash from sales of cannabis and decided it could no longer afford the risk.  John’s situation is a depressing part of this story because John’s business lost  thousands of dollars and 40% of its revenue virtually overnight. Unfortunately John’s story is all too common.


Across town is Ashley.

Business is good!  Ashley has access to a cannabis merchant account that does not require any funny business (miscoding).  The acquiring bank knows she operates a dispensary and the bank is okay with that.  There is no chance that she will be shut down or have her cannabis merchant account closed as long as she treats her customers with honesty and fairness like she always has. She also has an ATM in her dispensary and it has worked flawlessly with no interruptions for almost four years now.  Ashley has a trouble free ATM because she doesn’t need to monitor it, maintain it, or constantly stock it with cash. The ATM is not owned by Ashley or her business nor is not stocked with cash from her dispensary so it’s always working, and filled with money.


While Ashley plans her second vacation this year John is wondering how much longer he will be able to cover his overhead and keep his dispensary open.  Both owners work extremely hard but it seems Ashley is working smarter than John and has access to better technology and business solutions than John does.


If you think Ashley’s approach to managing her dispensary and cannabis merchant account makes sense and maybe she is on to something good, please contact us for details.

Jim Lange/President/Naturepay

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