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Accounting & Your Cannabis Business: What You Need to Know and How to Get the Help You Need

All companies – no matter what industry – need proper financial processes and controls. For any business that wants to be successful and profitable, this means having the right team or team member in place to oversee strategy and day-to-day financial activities and operations. Solid accounting practices are critical in creating a strong foundation in which your company can grow.

That said, if you own a cannabis business, you need a cannabis accountant.

Cannabis accountants know the industry.

As a cannabis business owner, you’re dealing with a myriad of challenges often at high speed. Regulations and compliance, taxes, operations, employees and cash management are all high priorities and no matter what sect of the industry you’re in, it’s likely at least one of these areas is keeping you up at night.

And it makes sense in this ever-changing, dynamic industry. But you don’t need to fumble around in confusion. With a little planning and the right support, you can build a strong financial foundation for your cannabis business to make sure you are well-positioned for maximizing growth and profit.

We know it can be painful to shell out the money to bring on an accounting professional, especially when you are first starting out and have competing, urgent expenses. But we know from our work with other cannabis companies and startups, it can be a game changer for you. Working with a qualified and competent CPA or accountant will help alleviate any headaches related to your company’s finances and compliance requirements. It will allow you to focus on your strengths and the parts of your business that you love. That’s why it’s critical you find the proper accounting partner to bring onboard.

The issue of safe banking, and how a cannabis accountant can help.

The issue of safe banking in the cannabis industry is a huge one. With cannabis listed as a Schedule I drug, most banks have been hesitant to do business with the industry due to its legal status. However, an accountant can help solve the problem.

Accountants can provide guidance on the legal and financial regulations that must be followed for a business to remain compliant. They can also help create a framework for banking operations in order to ensure that all transactions are secure and lawful. This can help businesses stay up to date on the ever-evolving cannabis industry regulations, while also ensuring they stay on the right side of the law.

Additionally, an accountant can help a business better understand the banking products and services that are available to them. With the help of an accountant, a business can find the right banking partner that is willing to work with them, regardless of their status as a cannabis-touching business. Ultimately, an accountant can help businesses in the cannabis industry navigate the issue of safe banking and provide them with the necessary tools to remain compliant. And while we can’t actually store your money, we can help you take proactive steps to ensure your cash isn’t stored in a duffel bag somewhere waiting to be stolen.

What does a cannabis accountant do?

Have you ever wondered what a cannabis accountant does? The answer is, quite a lot! For starters, cannabis accountants are well-versed in the complex tax code surrounding the cannabis industry, known as 280E. They handle things like filing state and federal taxes, as well as helping prepare your business to seek investors and secure funding.

But that's not all they do. Cannabis accountants also provide important compliance advice. They will make sure that your business is in line with all relevant laws and regulations, both on the state and federal level. Furthermore, they can help you optimize your business's finances by providing insights on cost-effective strategies.

And, of course, they will be there to offer professional tax preparation and advice. So, if you're looking for someone to help with the financial side of your cannabis business, look no further than a cannabis accountant!

What your CPA wants to know

At Indiva Advisors, one of the first questions we ask a potential client is what type of accounting software they are using. This is important to see what type of records are being kept, the type of business structure implemented (are there multi-licenses and multi-locations or one location only) and get an overview of the company’s operations.

Typically, many small cannabis business owners are using QuickBooks or Xero, two online user-friendly accounting systems. That can be a great place to start. But we want to see if the system will support the company’s growth from both the accounting and regulatory perspective. We’ll check to see what financial reports the systems produce, any audit history functions and other outputs that make sense to those overseeing the company’s operations.

Once we understand the accounting system the cannabis company is using, we’ll dive into a discussion about their business plan – for the next one, three and five years. We want to get a sense of where they are going and their trajectory from the present to where they want to be in the near future. That helps us assess what their needs will be and give us milestones to work toward. This is important because it’s not one-size-fits-all when it comes to business plans. For example, the plan of a one-location dispensary who wants to remain independent will look very different than the plan of a business owner who wants to acquire different licenses and be in five different states in five years.

Developing a business plan is key in charting the company’s path – for both the accountants and the client. Knowing the objectives, mission and vision of our clients help us better propel them toward accomplishing their goals – while staying in compliance.

The cannabis accountants at Indiva Advisors

Our team at Indiva Advisors is comprised of experienced cannabis accountants who are committed to compliance and saving clients money. We provide a full range of accounting and finance services, from bookkeeping to tax preparation. We work with clients of all sizes, from start-ups to established businesses.

Contact us today to see how we can help you save money and ensure compliance.


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