The marijuana industry is almost unrecognizable when you compare what it is today with what it was a couple of decades ago. Far from the completely black market, the marijuana industry is now valued at $4 billion a year. In addition, things have transitioned from farmers hiding from helicopters to business suits and legal transactions. Before, funding and payment processing were impossible. Now, alternative lenders offer quick, flexible solutions (consider Marijuana Merchant Account). No more hiding in the shadows.
Among the many changes, the marijuana industry has recently begun to attract a growing line of investors. These individuals are more interested in the money than with the product itself. According to Marijuana Business Daily, investors plan on average to invest half a million dollars in the marijuana industry in 2017. Several investors have even shared they are willing to risk more than $25 million. Participating parties include individual investors, private equity and venture capital firms. All are hoping to seize profitable opportunities to monetize marijuana.
In a recent article, Forbes revealed the top five financial leaders in the cannabis industry:
- MedMen Capital
Founded in 2010 by cofounder and Chief Executive Officer Adam Bierman and Andrew Modlin, the MedMen Opportunity Fund has invested in seven projects, including: dispensaries spanning from California and New York, and cultivation facilities in California, New York and Nevada. $99.2 million has been raised, including $60 million raised through MedMen Opportunity Fund (which closed in April).
- Phyto Partners
Known for its generosity, Phyto Partners drops between $500,000-$750,000 into company investments. Phyto takes particular interest in building relationships with leading companies in the marijuana industry, including: cultivators, dispensaries, device/product manufacturers, researchers and more. According to Managing Director Brett Finkelstein, “Since we have the ability to deploy a larger amount of capital, the fund can get more favorable terms. This usually means better valuations, more equity and more control.”
- Casa Verde Capital
Casa Verde differs from the previously listed financial companies in that its investments are smaller, $250,000 to $500,000 per new company. However, the company names are bigger (e.g. Snoop Dogg and Ted Chung). Casa Verde says its focus is currently set on becoming the preeminent venture partners for early stage companies.
- Poseidon Asset Management
Founded in 2014, Poseidon Asset Management’s exclusive commitment is to cannabis investing. Recently, the company led a $3.5 million purchase of a winery that intends to switch to cannabis crops. Thus far, the company has raised $25 million and invested in 40 different companies.
- Arcview Group
Arcview group was founded by Troy Dayton and longtime activist Steve DeAngelo. Arcview has provided capital for 141 companies – Mass Roots, MJ Freeway, Medicine Man, Eaze, among many others – and has invested $115 million. Their specialty is vetting and presenting companies seeking investment with people who wish to invest.