Altitude Investment Management Closes Cannabis Fund I at $30M

NYC Based Cannabis Investment Firm Successful Fund I Raise, looks to Fund II

NEW YORK: Altitude Investment Management announced that it will close Fund I on November 30, 2018 with $30 million raised. Fund I commenced March 1, 2018 and is currently invested in 16 companies which emphasize the fund’s focus on investing in a diverse range of early-stage to growth companies supporting the fast-growing legal global cannabis industry. Altitude is led by John Brecker, Jon Trauben, Michael Goldberg, and Roderick Stephan. Collectively, the partners have over 100 years of fund investment management experience and have managed investor capital in the alternative asset management space for the majority of their careers.

“Over the past year we have watched the global legal cannabis market grow, change, and begin to mature,” says partner John Brecker. “At Altitude, we believe in the long-term growth of the industry––our portfolio strategy rests on this premise and we are confident that the evolution of the legalized industry will continue to provide compelling global investment opportunities.”

As Fund I continues to deploy its capital throughout 2019, Altitude will be launching Fund II in Q1 2019. Fund II will continue Altitude’s focus on the ever-expanding growth opportunities within the global cannabis market with investments in companies that touch the plant as well as ancillary businesses supporting the industry. Altitude seeks to raise in excess of $100 million for Fund II.

Partner Michael Goldberg goes on to say, “As the cannabis industry matures, more companies will require significant growth capital to fund product, service and geographic expansion. In addition, increasing competition will create the need for consolidation, merger and acquisition and distressed investment opportunities. A larger capital base in Fund II will ideally position Altitude to take advantage of these opportunities.”

Fund I’s portfolio consists of some of the leading firms spanning the North American cannabis industry with concentrations in plant-touching operators/brands/distribution and non-plant-touching companies providing compliance, advertising/marketing, ag-tech and data solutions including:

  •  BDS Analytics, the leader in cannabis business intelligence.
  •  Canndescent, a leading California ultra-premium brand with world class management and best practices from consumer-packaged goods, advanced agriculture, and luxury lifestyle marketing.
  •  C4 Distro, a leader in the California cannabis distribution market that provides quality distribution services to California’s extremely fragmented market of suppliers and retailers.
  •  Enlighten, the leading in-dispensary digital marketing platform.
  •  Flowhub, a leading seed-to-sale compliance and robust point-of-sale SaaS platform in partnership with Hewlett Packard.
  •  Front Range Bio, an agricultural biotech company that specializes in tissue culture propagation of high value crops at industrial scale to improve reliability, efficiency, and safety.
  •  GrassRoots, a fully-licensed, vertically-integrated multi-state cannabis company active in cultivation, extraction, manufacturing, branding, and retailing.
  •  Loud Pack Farms, a leading California vertically-integrated cannabis consumer products company with a family of brands including Loudpack, Kingpen, Double Barrel and Honey Pot.
  •  PathogenDX, a provider of a patented DNA-based disruptive testing technology for state mandated microbial testing and environmental screening.
  •  Segra, a Canadian plant biotechnology company that specializes in industrial-scale plant micropropagation and plant genotyping services.
  •  Würk, which helps cannabis companies provide the necessary human resources and payroll infrastructure to manage their employee’s needs and to stay compliant with government regulations.

Partner Jon Trauben sums up Altitude’s Fund I strategy by saying: “Altitude focused on the industry as a whole – investing in the best management teams and business strategies of companies that will be foundational to this emerging industry. We sought reasonable valuation entry points taking advantage of early illiquidity and inefficiency due to the existing federal prohibition. As the cannabis market matures, Altitude believes that its portfolio companies will benefit from a rapidly growing global market, continued relaxation of prohibition, and the acceptance of cannabis as a medical, health and wellness, and adult-use recreational product.”

Altitude Investment Management Believes Canadian Cannabis Legalization “Milestone”

NEW YORK: The legalization of cannabis for medical and adult use in Canada represents a milestone in the growing trend toward legalization and decriminalization of cannabis and cannabis products, according to Altitude Investment Management.

Screenshot 2018-10-16 09.14.21“Canada is the second country in the world, after Uruguay, to legalize cannabis for both medical purposes and adult use, and it is the first country in North America to do so,” observed Jon Trauben, partner at Altitude.

He added, “We believe that the legalization in Canada offers a roadmap to invest in the companies that will form the basis of the legal cannabis industry in the coming years. Altitude Investment Management’s portfolio strategy rests on this premise, and we are confident that the growth of the legalized industry will continue to provide compelling investment opportunities globally.”

Altitude Investment Management invests in a range of early-stage to growth companies supporting the fast-growing legal global cannabis industry. Its portfolio includes companies that touch the plant as well as ancillary businesses supporting the industry. Trauben said, “The production of cannabis represents a fraction of the overall investment opportunities. The industry requires support from software, financial services, distribution and more. Our investment discipline has us looking at the best management teams that can build a moat around the business.”

The size of the Canadian market is estimated at a few billion dollars a year at present. The Canadian Parliamentary Budget Office stated that 700,000 kilograms of cannabis at C$10 a gram would be needed to displace the products currently on the black market. Liz Stahura, President of BDS Analytics, recently stated that the legal global cannabis market will expand from $13 billion this year to $32 billion in the next five years.

Trauben stated, “The truth is that there are more than a few unknowns when it comes to market size, speed of growth, and displacement of illicit cannabis, but the important thing from our perspective is that the global trend toward legalization continues and Canada’s new regulatory system governing medical and adult use cannabis is a milestone along that path.”

The Altitude fund is led by John Brecker, Jon Trauben, Michael Goldberg, and Roderick Stephan. Collectively the partners have over 100 years of Wall Street investment management experience and have managed investor capital in the alternative asset management space for the majority of their careers. Altitude already has a portfolio of 15 companies spanning the cannabis industry–– including: BDS Analytics, Flowhub, Canndescent, C4 Distro, Enlighten, PathogenDX, and Würk––and will use capital to continue to invest across the global industry.

Ten New Investments In The Cannabis Space Look Attractive

By Jon Trauben, Altitude Investment Management

NEW YORK: Altitude Investment Partners, LP’s has made recent cannabis industry investments. During the period of March through August 2018, Altitude invested in ten companies: six of which were add-on investments to existing portfolio companies and four were investments in companies new to the Altitude portfolio.

The Altitude portfolio now consists of investments in 15 companies. The following is a summary of a selection of notable recent investments.

BDS ANALYTICS – Altitude made an add-on investment as co-lead in BDS Analytics’ Series B Preferred Stock $3.5 million capital raise. BDS is the leader in cannabis business intelligence.

This funding places BDS in a very strong position to execute the national expansion of its GreenEdgeTM software and to roll out its Consumer Insights & Industry Intelligence services to a much broader client base. Using the GreenEdgeTM sales tracking software, BDS Analytics is able to generate actionable insights pulled from hundreds of dispensary partners’ point-of-sale systems and closely study the behaviors and psychographics of cannabis users through its Consumer Insights Group. Its Industry Intelligence Services enables the company to make accurate market-wide financial projections and help the cannabis industry make better informed decisions. We are very impressed with the management team. Based on extensive experience in other industries, BDS Analytics has developed proprietary software and services that provide its clients with really useful data and insights. Its value is reflected in the rapid growth and diversification of the BDS Analytics client base.

CANNDESCENT – Altitude made an add-on investment in Canndescent’s Series C Convertible Note $13 million capital raise. Canndescent closed 2017 as the #1-selling brand of cannabis flower in California with its market-leading effects—Calm, Cruise, Create, Connect and Charge and is taking that success to the vape and ingestible categories. Canndescent is a leading modern cannabis company by combining world class management with best practices from consumer-packaged goods, advanced agriculture, and luxury lifestyle marketing. The company is commencing a multi western-state expansion strategy. We took a small position in Canndescent’s Series B Preferred Stock raise and have increased our investment significantly based on the milestones the company has achieved in such a short period of time.

GRASSROOTS CANNABIS (AES Compassionate Care PA and Grassroots Compass Ventures IL) – Altitude made separate investments in both AES Compassionate Care Pennsylvania and Grassroots Compass Ventures Illinois. Each are fully-licensed, vertically-integrated cannabis companies that are active in cultivation, extraction, manufacturing and retailing. Both companies are managed by the same management team. Our investments in multi-state vertically-integrated operators will allow us to participate in the growth and value creation as the medicinal markets grow, new patients are added, and new approvals for qualifying conditions increase the patient base. Additionally, large upside exists when a planned rollup takes place and as these states legalize adult use.

FLOWHUB – Altitude made an add-on investment in Flowhub’s Convertible Note $3.3 million capital raise. Setting a new standard for the highly regulated industry, Flowhub offers dispensary and cultivation license holders a metrcTM integrated platform built specifically to simplify compliance, with data automatically sent to state regulators via an API. Flowhub’s award-winning software serves more than 300 of the largest retailers and cultivators in the United States. Flowhub processes over $1B in cannabis sales annually and is the top cannabis compliance technology recommended by state agencies. Flowhub has successfully created software which meets the regulatory and compliance requirements of each state and also creates a sticky customer with recurring monthly revenues. We are excited by the accelerating growth of this company

C4 DISTRO (Golden Systems) – Altitude made a lead investment in Golden Systems’ Class B Preferred Units $5 million capital raise. Golden Systems owns C4 Distribution Co. (a.k.a C4 Distro), a California- licensed distribution operating company. C4 is poised to become a leader in the California cannabis distribution market. California needs companies to provide quality distribution services due to the extremely fragmented market of suppliers and retail dispensary buyers. C4 has most recently added four new brands for distribution to its growing list of products. With service to over 160 dispensaries in southern California, C4 is experiencing accelerating month-over-month growth by leveraging its high touch business model to build close relationships with its customers. The distributor plays a material role in the supply chain as well as in creating and growing brands. We believe C4 has the right management team to capitalize on this opportunity.

PATHOGEN DX – Altitude was the co-lead investor in PathogenDx’s Convertible Note $3.4 million capital raise. PathogenDx provides DNA-based disruptive testing technology and solutions to the cannabis, botanical, food, and agriculture markets at an adaptable scale for both large and small testing facilities. The company offers growers, processors, producers, consumers, and ancillary services real-time data and information pertaining to the quality of their product, ensuring a safer commodity and preventing millions of dollars in losses from contaminated or spoiled crops. PathogenDx’s testing kits identifies bacterial and fungal contaminants and reduces testing time down to hours from the traditional petri- dish method which takes days. The company is in an enviable position as it fulfills a central regulatory need with cutting edge science, while alleviating existing bottlenecks.


Jon Trauben is a partner at Altitude Investment Partners, LP, a US-based, global venture capital fund that invests in a range of early-stage to growth companies supporting the fast-growing legal global cannabis industry. The fund is managed by Altitude Investment Management, LLC, (the “Manager”), whose members have been actively investing in the cannabis industry and have successfully invested in the alternative investment space for years. The Manager provides institutional quality investment management experience to its investors. The fund continues to accept new investments and plans to close the fund to investors later this year. 

BDS Analytics Raises $3.5 Million In Series B

COLORADO:  BDS Analytics, a leading provider of cannabis market intelligence and consumer research, has raised $3.5 million in Series B funding in a round led by CanopyVentures and Altitude Investment Management, with participation from other leading investors, including Panther Opportunity Fund, and follow-on investments from several existing investors.

“We are very pleased to receive investments from such an illustrious group,” said Roy Bingham, CEO and Founder of BDS Analytics. “This funding places us in a very strong position to execute the national expansion of our GreenEdge software and to roll out our Consumer Insights and Industry Intelligence services to a much broader client base.”

“BDS Analytics graduated from our affiliated accelerator, CanopyBoulder, in 2015 and has since done an exceptional job positioning itself as a go-to source for industry data on market trends, brand development and consumer insights,” said Micah Tapman, Managing Director of CanopyVentures. “We are thrilled to help drive BDS Analytics’ incredible growth and look forward to continuing to work with the team to realize their many opportunities.”

“We are very impressed with the management team,” said John Brecker, Partner of Altitude Investment Management, LLC. “Based on extensive experience in other industries, BDS Analytics has developed proprietary software and services that provide its clients with really useful data and insights. Its value is reflected in the rapid growth and diversification of the BDS Analytics client base.”