Cannabis financial technology firm Abaca welcomes Vince Laborde, Sean Russell and Mara Williams to its team.

Abaca enables traditional banking services for the majority of the legal Arkansas cannabis industry, as well as in the states of Oklahoma, Missouri, Illinois, and North Dakota. Additionally, the company’s fintech banking platform offers lending and payment processing services to cannabis and hemp/CBD businesses nationwide.

As a technology company, we have adapted quite rapidly to remote work. Our business is still fully operational,” says Abaca CEO Dan Roda. “Now more than ever, attracting top talent is a priority. Vince, Sean and Mara are integral to Abaca’s growth and future.”

Vince Laborde VP of Lending Abaca

Vince Laborde joins as vice president of lending and will help Abaca’s cannabis business clients with real estate/mortgage loans, equipment financing, inventory credit lines, purchase order financing and receivables factoring. Abaca has lending offices in North Little Rock, Arkansas and Denver, Colorado. Laborde joins Abaca from Choice Hotels International, Inc. where he led development, equity investment and lending efforts supporting the launch of the Cambria Hotels brand. Laborde is a CFA charterholder and a graduate of the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business.

“Abaca’s monumental growth in the past year is testament to the budding cannabis industry not only in Arkansas, but in the entire United States. Cannabis is often considered the industry of the one percent. I look forward to proving that wrong by connecting cannabis operators nationwide with traditional lending services,” says Laborde.

Sean Russell IT Systems Specialist Abaca

Abaca also welcomes Sean Russell as an information technology systems specialist. Russell’s mastery of bank core systems and software will be instrumental in assuring that Abaca’s cannabis banking platform is able to deliver enterprise-class service and stability as the company grows and expands. Rusell joins Abaca from Bank of England Mortgage where he served as network operations manager.

Mara Williams Inside Sales Lead Abaca

Finally, Mara Williams joins Abaca as an inside sales lead. Williams previously worked at Pinnacle Wealth Group as a client relationship manager. She will support the sales team’s efforts to sign legal cannabis businesses up for bank accounts and payment processing services.

“North Little Rock welcomes pioneering technology firms like Abaca to our burgeoning Argenta neighborhood. Argenta is quickly becoming a technology hot spot in Arkansas. Dan and his team’s unique business model are poised to thrive here,” says North Little Rock Mayor Joe Smith.

Read about our new hires in Arkansas Business.