Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco employee Dante Tosetti has left his post and taken a new position with Privateer Holdings Inc., a wealthy, prominent cannabis investment firm.
Though the U.S. Justice Department has outlined in detail how banks can provide services to legal marijuana businesses, financial institutions have remained hesitant. As Director of Treasury Compliance with Privateer, Tosetti’s new role is to reach out to banks and set new relationship standards with the cannabis industry, The Wall Street Journal reports.
“My goal is to change the misconception that servicing the cannabis industry is a compliance burden for banks,” Tosetti says.
Thanks to the unwillingness of banks to work with legitimate marijuana businesses, the industry is inundated with cash. According to Patrick Moen, Director of Compliance and General Counsel at Privateer, “The all-cash nature of the industry creates not only an administrative burden and an unfair stigma, but also presents a public-safety risk.”
“I’ve been in a room with a million dollars in cash, and… you can feel it’s not a safe environment,” says Brendan Kennedy, Privateer CEO.
Privateer Holdings invests exclusively in the cannabis industry. Major brands under Privateer include Marley Natural, Leafly, and Tilray. In April, Privateer closed a Series B round of investment with $75 million. Adding Tosetti to their heavyweight line-up could open the door for cannabis businesses across the country to finally get access to much-needed banking services.
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