Hashish tech platform and supply big Eaze Options is going through a brand new authorized problem to its enterprise mannequin, this time from a Canadian competitor that additionally runs a supply platform in California.
Toronto-based DionyMed filed go well with towards Eaze in San Francisco County Superior Courtroom, alleging the California firm makes use of wire and financial institution fraud to course of credit score and debit card funds from clients shopping for marijuana by its on-line platform.
The lawsuit was filed on behalf of DionyMed’s California subsidiary, Herban Industries, which runs a competing supply platform known as Chill.
An Eaze spokeswoman dismissed the allegations as “false” and an try by DionyMed to spice up its personal enterprise and inventory worth.
The lawsuit claims that Eaze makes use of unfair enterprise practices that give it an edge over rivals comparable to Chill by illegally processing credit score and debit card funds by European-based shell firms.
“Eaze conspires to disguise the cannabis transactions as transactions for canine toys, dive gear, carbonated drinks, drone elements, and face lotions, amongst different issues, to acquire approval for these transactions,” the lawsuit alleges.
“To perpetrate these frauds, Eaze created or partnered with Cyprus- and U.Ok.-based shell firms that purport to promote these seemingly innocuous merchandise however actually exist solely or primarily for the aim of misrepresenting the character of the underlying transactions.”
The go well with asks for an injunction to pressure Eaze to stop all such exercise however doesn’t request any financial damages.
The lawsuit follows an announcement in March that one other DionyMed California subsidiary, Hometown Coronary heart, broke ties with Eaze as a result of it couldn’t confirm that its “bank card cost processing methodology met regulatory compliance necessities.”
Eaze denies allegations
In an emailed assertion to Marijuana Enterprise Each day, Eaze spokeswoman Elizabeth Ashford known as the go well with “a thinly veiled try by publicly traded Canadian firm DionyMed to achieve a bonus by litigation, prop up their failing inventory worth and publicize their new supply platform.
“The allegations are false, and their makes an attempt to cover their true motives are apparent”.
Ashford additionally pointed to earlier firm statements that Eaze doesn’t course of digital funds. That’s the accountability of the licensed MJ distributors for whom Eaze is facilitating gross sales by its web site and smartphone app, she stated.
San Francisco legal professional Katy Younger, who focuses on enterprise disputes, stated the case may show “harmful” for the trade at giant.
Even when Eaze is harmless of the fees levied by DionyMed, she famous, a few of its retail companions may very well be responsible, and this lawsuit may expose that.
“There’s going to be wide-reaching repercussions, the place numerous companies’ data that aren’t concerned within the combat between Eaze and DionyMed, they’re all going to get dragged in,” Younger stated.
“It’s fairly simple to think about a state of affairs the place one of many dispensaries that’s on Eaze’s platform, possibly they’ve had their checking account revoked a number of occasions, and so they might have discovered a workaround that may not completely be on the up and up.
“Now that enterprise goes to get dragged into this lawsuit by the invention course of.”
Younger believes such litigation may set a dangerous authorized precedent involving the “nasty underbelly” of how the trade does enterprise.
“Everyone knows within the cannabis trade it’s important to get your palms a bit soiled,” she stated, “and the second we begin blowing one another up in lawsuits for the varied ways in which entrepreneurs have found out easy methods to do enterprise, that’s how the trade begins to cannibalize itself.”
Eaze can be nonetheless battling a lawsuit filed final Might during which a buyer alleged the corporate violated federal legislation by spamming her and others with unsolicited cellphone textual content ads.
John Schroyer may be reached at [email protected]