Guide to Cannabis Cryptocurrencies

For those who love the idea of being on the cutting edge, cannabis and cryptocurrency seem to be the perfect fit.

Both have their passionate enthusiasts and advocates, who often aren’t fans of regulation but are pro-privacy. The decentralized nature of blockchain and cryptocurrencies creates an interesting model for financial transactions that’s intriguing for the cannabis industry. As businesses in the cannabis space struggle to secure financing or banking services from major banks and credit card companies, some are turning their attention to cryptocurrency markets for an answer.

Many proponents are claiming digital and virtual currency is the perfect payment method for the cannabis space, where there is a lot of grey-area with regard to legality. Even with states legalizing cannabis across the nation, there is still a pressing need for businesses to obtain standard financial services in order to operate.

While cannabis related cryptocurrencies bring tons of potential, there is also reason for caution when exploring various investment options. The values of many cryptocurrencies remain volatile, sometimes changing dramatically each minute.

With that said, there are blockchain projects popping up to serve the cannabis industry that bring much needed financial services to legitimate companies. There is certainly a fit for cryptocurrency and cannabis, so you’ll want to learn about the various coins in the crypto markets that relate to the cannabis industry.

Potcoin (POT)

Potcoin was the first digital coin to arrive on the cannabis market in 2014. The coin is available for people to purchase items and send funds securely from one digital wallet to another.  Transactions generate a small fee, less than 1 percent, which is still better than the 5-6 percent that many mainstream credit card merchants charge. Transactions can also be made in seconds with no chargebacks.  Dispensaries are encouraged to accept the coins from their customers and then make their own wholesale or equipment purchases at participating brick-and-mortar or online businesses. Or they can save the coins while they gain interest and possible value.

Budbo (BUBO)

The Budbo blockchain application is intended for anyone in the cannabis space to use for purchases, whether it’s actual product, equipment, or raw materials. This will assist in everyone’s supply chain and general management. Each token can be tracked via GPS through the network from grower to consumer, and there is also an online dashboard to monitor all tokens coming or going. The intent is for all participating network customers to share the same data, which can prevent fraud and save everyone money.  The first round of Budbo token sales was recently completed through the Ethereum network, and token owners are encouraged to start using them. More than 75,000 users signed up for the first round, which allows them access to a swipe-able Tinder-like app that shares all products available for purchase from network participants.

Paragon (PRG)

Paragon token is designed for businesses or consumers wanting to follow their cannabis from seed to sale. People can track their product from harvest, through processing, to its final retail location. This allows security-conscious investors to make sure every step was followed in its production and sale. Investors are also considered part of the decentralized Paragon community, and can vote on policies and corporate decisions. In the past, this has included providing input as the company chose its first actual physical headquarters in Los Angeles. Paragon recently completed its first crowdsale of tokens, and now it’s trying to focus on securing more investors along with inviting cannabis-friendly doctors and medical professionals to join the network. Voting members can also access features of the Los Angeles space if they’re in the geographic area, provided they pay in Paragon coins for things like food or access to the lab.  

HempCoin (THC)

HempCoin goes beyond the cannabis industry; owners want to make it available to growers and distributors in the larger agricultural industry, including the areas of hemp and tobacco. It promotes allowing purchasers to be as anonymous as possible by using a secure masternode system designed to mask users. To participate in a masternode, people need at least 20,000 THC tokens as collateral in cases of fraud. But being part of a masternode does provide access to even more coins over time; even more so if the token’s value increases. All standard transactions are mixed with other transactions, which means any outside monitoring or hacking attempts of the datastream won’t be successful. Investors can vote on company proposals and be part of a social community. Token owners pay from their wallets through a mobile app, online, or the HempPAY card. In addition to being a payment platform, users are encouraged to be part of the community with artwork and more.

AgroTechFarm (ATF)

AgroTechFarm wants people to know that it has been picked by Coinstaker as one of the “Top 5 ICOs that Might Make you a Millionaire.” Having read this article, which is required before browsing the company site, you’re free to learn more about this Russian company that offers innovative indoor hydroponic farming equipment to customers in the U.S. and Canada. The patented equipment for home and industrial use is designed for maximum growth of cannabis and other small-scale crops without pesticides, and can be controlled by an app. Funding for the venture is in the form of the ATF token. Investors who pay with the token receive a discount on their equipment purchases as well as shipping costs. Tokens can be spent or sold back to ATF in exchange for voting shares. This concept definitely has potential – beyond the direct savings for participants, the company is active in two countries that are poised for high growth.  Part of the appeal is that anyone can participate, from an amateur vegetable grower looking for new tools to serious investors. Tokens are available through May 2018.

Tokes (STKS)

Tokes promotes software solutions for payment processing and inventory management, with preference given to customers who use its tokens for business-to-business or business-to-consumer transactions. The supply chain management resources help growers and dispensaries keep track of details about all their products and transactions, including cultivation, strain types, testing info, and packaging. Investors with tokens and Waves Wallets can use them at participating dispensaries. The company is based primarily in Las Vegas, which is where many customers are, but has relationships with software/currency providers in the U.S. and Europe.  Transaction fees are less than 1 cent, and can go through in 30 seconds. Tokes makes it priority a focus on education, and the site includes a highly ‘starter’ section to help visitors understand the basics of cryptocurrency. It also publishes a regular newsletter designed to educate readers in general about tokens and mining.

DopeCoin (DOPE)

DopeCoin Gold, with the motto “Freedom is Not Enough,” offers customers a type of currency along with “an experience.” It is designed to be secure yet appealing to those in the industry, especially those eager to see the potential earnings available. DopeCoinGold, formerly known as DopeCoin, is especially active in the Smoke Exchange, an advertising and marketing platform designed for cryptocurrency tokens in the cannabis industry. It offers zero fees for any transactions between users and makes it easy to get started: users need to trade their Bitcoins for DopeCoins. Investors can also receive 5 percent in interest annually as a ‘staking bonus’ to reward investors for not selling their tokens for another type. As of spring 2018, the coin was still considered ‘mineable,’ which means anyone can take the effort to find their own coins within blockchains.

GreenMed (GRMD)

GreenMed encourages dispensaries and consumers alike to take part in this app that allows people to order online. While many state and federal laws prohibit direct online financial transactions for cannabis, GreenMed network users are permitted to place secure orders through the GreenMed app if they use GMRD tokens. Or, once they make their order through the app, they can pay at their dispensary via tokens or using a credit or debit card, providing they have their smart phones handy with the app to facilitate the transaction. GreenMed offers visitors a map of legal dispensaries in California and also provides a delivery service to customers who don’t want to or can’t visit stores. Customers who pay via the app at their dispensary are eligible for a variety of rewards.

CannabisCoin (CANN)

CannabisCoin describes itself as “The Marijuana Bitcoin.” This peer-to-peer currency is designed to make it easier to make secure transactions between different businesses within the cannabis sector, or for consumers to purchase product from dispensaries. It was the second product of its type to hit the market in 2014, and it was originally intended for consumers first, with the price of 1 CANN tied to the price of 1 gram of cannabis. However, as the industry and prices evolved, it is now designed to appeal to more people in the industry and its rate isn’t as connected to product rate. CannabisCoin has announced plans to improve security for its blockchains in 2018 as a way of appealing to investors and regulators in the new California market. The business did start out a little rocky, with a large chunk of tokens put aside for early miners. These were claimed to be destroyed, but were later revealed to be used for bounties and future development.

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