Microsoft Joins Forces With A Cannabis Startup

Even as the laws surrounding marijuana are loosened, big corporations remain shy about forging ties with the cannabis industry. With the plant still illegal under federal law, most companies have stayed away entirely.

All that could soon change with Microsoft announcing this week plans to launch a seed-to-sale tracking system for use in states with legalized marijuana. In legal states, governments are wont to do digital tracking of marijuana plants using radio frequency identification (RFID) technology to prevent diversion into the black market.

Microsoft's plan is to join forces with Kind, a three-year-old L.A. start-up that sells tracking software to businesses and governments. Kind will soon be working on Microsoft's cloud, Azure.

"The Microsoft Cloud for Government supports government missions to regulate and monitor controlled substances and items, from the Department of Justice regulating tobacco and firearms to a state regulating legal cannabis. KIND Financial is building solutions on Microsoft's cloud platform to help government agencies act in their governmental capacity," a Microsoft spokesperson told Business Insider.

The start-up will now be able to work on Microsoft's cloud. The software, Agrisoft Seed to Sale, "closes the loop between marijuana-related businesses, regulatory agencies, and financial institutions," according to a press release.

While Kind also manufactures ATM-like marijuana sales kiosks, there's no indication Microsoft will participate in that aspect of the business.

h/t Business Insider.

banner image: Shutterstock / logoboom


With northern California's renowned cannabis festival, the Emerald Cup coming up next month, we're reflecting on all the fun we had last year with cannabis influencer Elise McRoberts interviewing Herbie Herbert, a former Santana roadie and manger for Journey, as well as Steve Parish, who managed the Jerry Garcia Band and went on the road with the Grateful Dead. Back int he day, bands touring the world had to smuggle their cannabis into Europe and other foreign countries. Traveling with equipment and other gear, roadies would have to find secret places to hide the stash.

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