Headset Announces $2.5 Million In Financing; Ramps Up Services To Cannabis Clients

WASHINGTON: Headset, a leading retail analytics firm for cannabis-related businesses closed $2.5 million in financing as part of its efforts to ramp up its suite of data products in the ever-competitive cannabis technology space.

Hypur Ventures, a leading-edge venture capital fund headquartered in Arizona, and Salveo Capital, a Chicago-based private-equity fund specializing in cannabis sector investments, have partnered with Headset to provide a deeper, richer set of tools for the emerging market.

“With this most recent fundraising, we are excited to be able to accelerate development and  adoption of Headset products across all legal cannabis markets,” said Cy Scott, co-founder and CEO. “Headset is well positioned to help the cannabis industry make more informed business decisions supported by retail transaction data.”

As the cannabis industry matures — eight states now have legalized recreational use and another 29 have medical marijuana programs — business intelligence is the key differentiator among successful and failing enterprises. Legal U.S. cannabis sales skyrocketed 17 percent to $5.4 billion in 2015. Most analysts forecast 25 percent compound annual growth in the next five years, expanding to market to 21.8 billion by 2020. As a comparison, this explosive industry growth curve mimics that of the cable TV business in the 1990s, which enjoyed a 19 percent annual growth and the broadband internet industry of the 2000s (29 percent).

For years, cannabis company’s struggled to tap into this revenue stream, suffering from a lack of actionable data insights that would inform business decisions. Headset, with its proprietary analytics, gives clients the information and tools to grow their business.

“Headset specializes in seeing ahead of the curve in terms of trends and innovation in the hyper-competitive cannabis market,” said Hypur Managing Director Christopher Male. “There’s a lot of synergy with the ecosystem of the Hypur Ventures portfolio.”

“Salveo Capital is excited to be partnered with Headset and its team,” said Managing Partner Michael Gruber. “Actionable data is critical to running a successful business, and Headset is empowering brands, product manufacturers, and retailers with insights not available previously.  Headset’s products will be a critical tool to a cannabis company’s success.”

With the $2.5 million infusion, Headset moves into 2017 in a strong position to help businesses as the new legal landscape expands. It will help close the information gap that has hampered companies in this emerging industry.

For more information or to request a free demo of the Headset platform please visit www.headset.io

Leafly Founders Depart, Raise Cash For New Marijuana Business Intelligence Startup

WASHINGTON: After five years, the founders of marijuana strain and dispensary database Leafly are moving on to their next cannabis-related startup.

Cy ScottBrian Wansolich, and Scott Vickers — who launched Leafly in 2010 — are the co-founders of Headset, a new Seattle-based startup that’s building a business intelligence platform for the fast-growing marijuana industry.

headset-product-details-mobile-r1Headset, which just raised about $450,000 of a $750,000 seed round from Poseidon Asset Management and a group of angel investors, offers what Scott describes as a market research and analysis tool similar to NielsenNPD or IRi, but for customers in the marijuana supply chain.

The idea is to give marijuana retailers, processors, and growers better insights and intelligence for their business, ultimately helping them make more money and offer better customer service.

“We’re staying in the cannabis industry but are tackling a different problem,” said Scott, who’s taking on the CEO role for the new company.

Headset’s platform provides a number of operational insights. For example, retailers can be immediately notified when stock is low of a particular product that’s been selling well, or find out if a specific strain isn’t flying off the shelves like it used to. Meanwhile, product manufacturers can access sell-through data, all-commodity volume information, and a competitive set analysis, among other insights.