Blockchain. Bitcoin. Timestamp. These aren’t the names of the newest cannabis strains, no. These are the terms some entrepreneurs believe might be the solution to the marijuana industry’s banking problems. 

Bitcoin, although new for many, has been around since late-2008. Many believe it was created in response to the financial crisis, but that hasn’t been confirmed. Still, as early as 2010 people were using bitcoin to pay for things as simple as pizza. 

One of the early adopters of bitcoin was the Internet, including underground markets that sell illegal goods. Nevertheless, Silicon Valley start-up groups began devising ways to legitimize bitcoin, and by April 2013, the collective value of all bitcoins passed a billion dollars.

Yet, in October 2013, FBI agents arrested Ross Ulbricht, 29, for running the Silk Road marketplace, an underground marketplace for drugs, including cannabis. It worked on one basic principle: Everyone remained anonymous. Credit cards and PayPal were not accepted. Only bitcoin. 

Still, the bitcoin industry has made enormous strides forward since then, and now is poised to be a real alternative to traditional banking for the cannabis industry. 

So if you are one of the many people out there interested in learning more about bitcoin and how it can potentially help the cannabis industry, join CoinStructive CEO, Chris Groshong, in “The Future of MJ Banking: How Bitcoin Can Change the Cannabis Industry.” This talk is on Friday, December 2 at 1 p.m. and is part of the PDX Weed Week lecture series.