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Safe Harbor Financial Issues Statement on Cannabis Rescheduling

GOLDEN, Colo., May 01, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- SHF Holdings, Inc., d/b/a/ Safe Harbor Financial (“Safe Harbor” or the “Company”) (NASDAQ: SHFS) , a leader in facilitating financial services and credit facilities to the regulated cannabis industry, issued the following statement by Safe Harbor Financial CEO Sundie Seefried on the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) rescheduling cannabis from Schedule I to Schedule III on the Controlled Substances Act (CSA).

Safe Harbor Financial CEO Sundie Seefried:
The profound impact of rescheduling cannabis from Schedule I to Schedule III signifies a crucial shift in the perception of cannabis, recognizing its medical potential and solidifying its legitimacy in the financial realm.

From a banking and lending perspective, we believe that the reclassification of cannabis will broaden lending opportunities for cannabis businesses, leading to access to lower interest rates, increased access to capital and improved financial stability across the industry. This newfound access to traditional financing channels has the potential to stimulate growth, innovation and compliance efforts within the industry, ultimately fostering economic development and job creation.

Furthermore, the global implications of potential rescheduling cannot be overlooked. Elevating cannabis to Schedule III demonstrates the United States’ leadership on an international scale, and has the potential to positively influence agreements and international treaties with organizations like the United Nations and World Health Organization. This shift could hold significant weight, especially for other countries seeking to challenge current classifications and legalize cannabis sales.

Despite these positive steps forward to the sector and its lending and banking climates, we also believe that certain challenges will continue to persist, particularly in addressing issues with payment networks, leaving the industry predominantly cash-intensive. While substantial changes to the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) regulations are unlikely at this time due the fact that cannabis remains under the Controlled Substance Act, we expect a reevaluation of BSA regulations sometime in the future. However, this will be driven primarily by the SAFER Banking Act should it pass. Lastly, state-level efforts to combat the illicit market will continue to be essential for supporting the continued growth of the legal cannabis sector.

While rescheduling cannabis to Schedule III represents progress, some of these regulatory challenges will necessitate careful navigation of compliance requirements. At Safe Harbor Financial, our expertise in streamlining operations and proficiency in compliance management sets us apart. By consolidating accounts with us, our clients are able to optimize efficiencies in navigating the BSA, which require maintaining rigorous compliance standards, and are crucial to uphold. As we continue to navigate this evolving landscape, we remain committed to providing innovative financial solutions tailored to the cannabis industry's needs, ensuring compliance with all regulatory mandates. We are prepared to embrace these changes and continue our mission of providing trusted financial services to cannabis entrepreneurs nationwide.

About Safe Harbor
Safe Harbor is among the first service providers to offer compliance, monitoring and validation services to financial institutions, providing traditional banking services to cannabis, hemp, CBD, and ancillary operators, making communities safer, driving growth in local economies, and fostering long-term partnerships. Safe Harbor, through its financial institution clients, implements high standards of accountability, transparency, monitoring, reporting and risk mitigation measures while meeting Bank Secrecy Act obligations in line with FinCEN guidance on cannabis-related businesses. Over the past eight years, Safe Harbor has facilitated more than $21 billion in deposit transactions for businesses with operations spanning over 41 states and US territories with regulated cannabis markets. For more information, visit www.shfinancial.org.

Forward-Looking Statements
Certain statements contained in this press release constitute "forward-looking statements'' within the meaning of federal securities laws. Forward-looking statements may include, but are not limited to, statements with respect to trends in the cannabis industry, including proposed changes in U.S. and state laws, rules, regulations and guidance relating to Safe Harbor's services; Safe Harbor's growth prospects and Safe Harbor's market size; Safe Harbor's projected financial and operational performance, including relative to its competitors and loan performance; new product and service offerings Safe Harbor may introduce in the future; the impact of recent volatility in the capital markets, which may adversely affect the price of the Company's securities; Safe Harbor’s ability to make the same or similar loans in the future; the outcome of any legal proceedings that may be instituted against Safe Harbor; other statements regarding Safe Harbor's expectations, hopes, beliefs, intentions or strategies regarding the future; and the other risk factors discussed in Safe Harbor's filings from time to time with the SEC. In addition, any statements that refer to projections, forecasts or other characterizations of future events or circumstances, including any underlying assumptions, are forward-looking statements. The words "anticipate," "believe," "continue," "could," "estimate," "expect," "intends," "outlook," "may," "might," "plan," "possible," "potential," "predict," "project," "should," "would," and similar expressions may identify forward-looking statements, but the absence of these words does not mean that a statement is not forward-looking. Forward-looking statements are predictions, projections and other statements about future events that are based on current expectations and assumptions and, as a result, are subject, are subject to risks and uncertainties. These forward-looking statements involve a number of risks and uncertainties (some of which are beyond the control of Safe Harbor), and other assumptions, that may cause the actual results or performance to be materially different from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. These and other risks are discussed in detail in the periodic reports that Safe Harbor files with the SEC, and investors are urged to review those periodic reports and Safe Harbor’s other filings with the SEC, which are accessible on the SEC’s website at www.sec.gov, before making an investment decision. Safe Harbor assumes no obligation to update its forward-looking statements except as required by law.

Media Contact:
KCSA Strategic Communications
Ellen Mellody
570-209-2947
safeharbor@kcsa.com

Investor Relations Contacts:
Safe Harbor Investor Relations
ir@SHFinancial.org

KCSA Strategic Communications
Phil Carlson
safeharbor@kcsa.com


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