Two executives from High Times have launched a private equity fund and they are attempting to raise $100 million to allow for investments in cannabis companies. The HT Growth Fund has plans to make individual investments of $2 million for marijuana merchant accounts in ancillary companies. These companies, however, do not actually handle any marijuana.
The purpose of these marijuana merchant accounts will be to look for businesses that are established and have reached growth limits. These will be businesses with no access to the traditional capital markets. Instead they will be startup businesses that need assistance with early stages of financing. Five years is the average exit time.
This fund is being run by Michael Kennedy and Michael Safir both of which who have ties with High Times Magazine. If the two are successful then this will make HT Growth the largest funding source in the industry. Some difficulty will lie ahead because many of investors are unsure about providing funds for the cannabis industry.
Kennedy has been with High Times since the 1970’s and has served as both general counsel and director. He runs a law firm that is located in New York City. In addition, he is also a major investor with the company that is owner of the magazine. Safir has been business manager for High Times since 2010.
Additional cannabis-focused investment groups and funds have started forming due to the climate improving daily. Plans by the federal government to being hands-off with marijuana businesses will also serve to have investors more willing to fund these businesses that are starting up.
Marijuana merchant accounts are set up for businesses that sell medical marijuana and need to process credit card payments as well as debit card payments.
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