Denver, Colorado-based Partner Colorado Credit Union is providing services to about 20 cannabusinesses in the state, with plans to add five more per month, the Credit Union Journal reports. The credit union first launched their Safe Harbor Private Banking division in January.
Nearly 25 percent of the financial institution’s 40 employees devote their time to servicing these clients, representing about 5 percent of all deposits at the credit union. However, cannabis businesses pay a bit more than the average Partner depositor for the service; monthly fees run 0.3 percent of deposits, with a $3,500 per month cap, according to a New Cannabis Ventures report.
According to Tim Cullen, owner of Colorado Harvest Company, the $2,500 his company pays each month for their deposit account is worth it for the peace of mind.
Partner’s CEO Sundie Seefried, said hosting cannabis businesses requires a “relationship of trust” and the credit union takes an average of three weeks to research a cannabis client before they will accept any money from the company.
“You have to know your customer really, really well,” Seefriend said in the CUJ report. “You have to have your eye on the businesses, on the owner and on the money.”
Seefried suggests that credit unions need to consider serving the industry, and that institution brass shouldn’t shut out the market due to their personal or ethical beliefs.
“We’re actually in the money-management business. If we don’t manage the money, then who will?” she said.