It can be difficult and confusing for an international cannabis company to determine the best way to engage in banking in the U.S. We know that because it is even confusing for domestic marijuana and hemp companies in the U.S. to determine whom to bank with.
Banking is not limited to traditional large international banks. Credit unions, many of which are confined to specific states or to specific areas of certain states, were among the first financial institutions to offer banking services to cannabis companies. Along with credit unions and bankers, payment processors and payment software companies are also good resources when trying to find the right banking institution because they work with many.
Smaller banks are generally not comfortable doing business with a foreign business because they do not have the resources to conduct international “KYC” (know your customer due diligence required of U.S. banks), but we have worked with some smaller U.S. banks that specialize in the cannabis industry and even in the international cannabis industry. For some banks, a payment to or from a place like Hong Kong always raises flags in the internal systems, and some are prepared to deal with that complexity while others are