Cannabis software company Blackbird and payment processor company AeroPay announced a strategic partnership to bring cashless payments to cannabis businesses for online ordering. Blackbird was sold in November 2020 by its parent Tilt Holdings (OTC: TLLTF). Tilt agreed to sell Yaris Acquisition, LLC better known as Blackbird to Slam Dunk, LLC, a Nevada limited liability corporation controlled by Tim Conder, TILT’s Chief Operating Officer and a member of the board of directors of the company. The company said the total valuation of the deal was $15 million and selling Blackbird resulted in a cut of $3 million in expenses quarterly.
The partnership includes the integration of AeroPay’s payments platform into Blackbird’s white-labeled dispensary menus and the BlackbirdGo cannabis marketplace. The two companies said they also have plans to bring greater efficiencies to other parts of the cannabis supply chain such as physical retail and B2B.
“Cash payments have dominated the cannabis retail consumer experience until now,” said Tim Conder, CEO & Co-Founder of 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.”
Through the integration, cannabis patients and customers using Blackbird will be able to pre-pay online at the time of check-out for delivery or curbside pick-up orders. Payments made with AeroPay will be facilitated through a secure bank-to-bank transfer between the patient or customer and the business.
AeroPay is a financial technology company providing alternative payment processing solutions to state-legal cannabis businesses. AeroPay has been approved to work in every state where cannabis businesses can legally operate as well as Washington D.C. AeroPay’s compliant solution offers a safe, simple, and streamlined way for patients or customers to pay their favorite cannabis businesses.
“Our approach has always been to create a better payment experience for both businesses and their customers,” said Daniel Muller, CEO & Founder of 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.”
Dispensary patients and customers ordering through a Blackbird white-labeled menu or the BlackbirdGo marketplace will have the option to pay with AeroPay. For first time AeroPay users, the sign-up process is two easy steps and happens directly on the menu at the time of check-out — customers simply create an AeroPay account and link their bank. For repeat users, payments can be completed with a single click.
While the focus of this integration with Blackbird’s menus is to improve the retail and consumer experience, both Blackbird and AeroPay also provide B2B solutions for the cannabis industry. The companies have plans to streamline the cannabis experience in other parts of the supply chain and lower the volume of cash by implementing digital payments.
“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.”
“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.”