California Cannabis Licensing Authorities File Civil Action Against Vertical Bliss (Kushy Punch) For Unlicensed Activity

CALIFORNIA:  The Bureau of Cannabis Control and California Department of Public Health (CDPH) announced today the filing of a complaint seeking civil penalties from Vertical Bliss, Inc. also known as Kushy Punch and related people for unlicensed commercial cannabis activity. The complaint was filed on September 23, 2020 by the California Office of the Attorney General in Los Angeles County Superior Court.

The complaint alleges that Vertical Bliss conducted unlicensed operations on an undisclosed premise in Canoga Park, California, and inverted illegally manufactured product back into the regulated market. On October 2, 2019, in response to tips about illegal manufacturing and distribution of cannabis goods, the Division of Investigation executed search warrants at the unlicensed Canoga Park location. The search revealed significant quantities of cannabis concentrates, edibles, vape cartridges and raw materials. Seized records document the production of more than 3.3 million Kushy Punch brand gummies during an 18-month period, with an estimated value of $64 million.

Vertical Bliss simultaneously held cannabis manufacturing and distribution licenses for a premises located in Chatsworth, California. These licenses were revoked, following the discovery of the unlicensed operations.

The Medicinal and Adult-Use Regulation and Safety Act (MAUCRSA) establishes strict requirements for the cannabis market and products, including requiring a state license and local approval for every premises where commercial cannabis activity is conducted. Manufacturing, distributing or selling cannabis goods without a state license or at a location that is not licensed is a violation of state law. A person engaging in commercial cannabis activity without a license is subject to civil penalties of up to three times the amount of the license fee for each day of operation.

To file a complaint regarding illegal cannabis activity, click here – Enforcement Online Services.

MariMed Acquires NJ-Based BSC Group Cannabis Firm

NEW JERSEY: MariMed Inc., a multi-state cannabis organization that develops, owns and manages cannabis facilities and branded products lines, announced today that it has finalized the acquisition of BSC Group, a highly respected cannabis firm headquartered in New Jersey that over the last three years has been engaged in competitive licensing, consulting and operations management across the country.

BSC founders and managing partners, Brian Staffa and Amber Staffa, will join the MariMed leadership team, bringing under the MariMed umbrella their extensive cannabis expertise, resources, intellectual property and a vast network of highly specialized affiliates spanning regulated fields of commercial cannabis, food and beverage, commercial agriculture, pharmaceuticals, regulatory compliance, consumer psychology, and the applied sciences.

Brian and Amber will help guide MariMed’s strategy for new markets like New Jersey, where lawmakers inch closer to consensus on adult use legislation. New Jersey represents just one of the markets being eyed by MariMed as they aggressively pursue new opportunities across the U.S. and abroad with their added bandwidth.

“Our team has worked with BSC Group on various projects in the past, and their laser focus made them an ideal partner to help fuel MariMed’s forward momentum,” said MariMed CEO Bob Fireman. “We are excited to bring on Amber and Brian, who have seasoned cannabis operations, corporate strategy, branding and marketing expertise. An organization is only as good as the people in it. The Staffas share our vision and work ethic and will be a great addition to our team.”

Brian Staffa noted, “This partnership with MariMed represented the right opportunity to solidify our industry presence for the long haul, positioning ourselves as an integral element of an established team with long term viability. They share our belief that the only path to market maturation and true consumer satisfaction is via an unwavering commitment to data-driven and documented, scaled processes.

Brian Staffa will bolster MariMed’s operations, coming on as VP of Cultivation & Manufacturing, leveraging nearly 10 years of commercial cannabis experience in over 150 facilities in 25 states and countries. Staffa’s audits of facility operations often reveal opportunities for optimizing efficiency, translating to increased top and bottom line growth.
With a substantial background in education, curriculum development, branding and consumer buying habits, Amber Staffa will join MariMed as VP of Branding & Marketing, fueling the potential for product development and partnership opportunities that will project MariMed’s voice and grow its branded product footprint.

BSC Group will become a wholly owned subsidiary of MariMed, and will continue to service its clients with an even larger arsenal of resources.

MedMen Announces Acquisition Of Florida Marijuana License And Cultivation Facility

CALIFORNIA: MedMen, the country’s leading cultivator, producer and retailer of state-sanctioned cannabis, has signed a definitive agreement to acquire dispensary and cultivation assets from Florida-based Treadwell Nursery.

As part of the transaction, MedMen will acquire Treadwell Nursery’s cultivation facility situated on 5 acres in Eustis, Florida and the right to open 25 medical marijuana dispensaries in the State of Florida.

Screenshot 2018-06-07 09.02.52“For nearly a decade we have been positioning ourselves to capitalize on enormous market opportunities like this,” said MedMen Co-founder and CEO Adam Bierman. “This acquisition is right in line with our strategy of establishing a presence early on in high potential markets with limited licenses and large populations. Florida is the third most populous state in the country with a medical marijuana market estimated to reach $1 billion in annual sales by 2020. MedMen has built the best-in-class brand, and we continue to invest in premium assets that solidify our dominant position in the most important cannabis markets in the world.”

MedMen employs more than 800 people and currently operates 18 licensed cannabis facilities in cultivation, manufacturing and retail in California, Nevada and New York. The addition of Florida expands the Company’s reach to yet another key market in the fastest growing industry in the country.

As consideration for the acquisition, the Company will pay US$53 million, subject to a working capital adjustment, half of which will be satisfied in cash and the other half of which will be satisfied by way of issuance of common units of MM Enterprises, a subsidiary of the Company, which by their terms are redeemable for Class B Subordinate Voting Shares of the Company. In respect of the cash consideration, the LLC will pay Treadwell Nursery US$6,625,000 on the closing date and on each of the dates that are three (3), six (6) and nine (9) months after the closing date. In respect of the Redeemable Units, the number of units will be based on the lesser of the closing trading price of the Subordinate Voting Shares on the Canadian Securities Exchange as of June 4, 2018 or the two-week weighted average daily closing price prior to the closing of the transaction.

The transaction is expected to close within 90 days and is subject to customary closing conditions, including receipt of state regulatory approvals. If certain regulatory approvals are not obtained, the Company and Treadwell Nursery will have the right to terminate the Agreement.

NORML Founder Keith Stroup To Address NJ Cannabis Symposium March 29 At NJPAC

NEW JERSEY:  The granddaddy of the marijuana reform movement, NORML founder Keith Stroup, will be a featured speaker at the upcoming NJ Cannabis Symposium’s “Finance and Investments” event.  The symposium takes place on March 29th at the NJPAC in Newark.

During his address, Stroup is expected to unveil The NORML Legal Committee (“NLC”) listserv, an attorney’s resource dedicated to cannabis business law.

Building on the success of their January program, which brought over 800 budding Cannabis entrepreneurs together to explore the Cannabis industry in NJ, the program is intended to educate those interested in preparing for cannabis business opportunities and follows a natural progression of topics relevant to NJ’s suspected timeline, spotlighting the intricacies, challenges, and opportunities associated with navigating all things finance.  Doors will open at 4pm to accommodate registration.

Justin Zaremba, editor of NJ Cannabis Insider will be one of the moderators. Brian Staffa of BSC Group will be the Emcee and Joshua Bauchner of Ansell Grimm & Aaron, PC will moderate the Q&A session.

Reno Cannabis Convention To Be Held April 7-8 At Whitney Peak Hotel

First Time Cannabis Convention In Reno

NEVADA:  Celebrating the arrival of adult use Cannabis in the state of Nevada, the first Reno Cannabis Convention will be held the weekend of April 7 at Reno’s Whitney Peak Hotel. Cole Markus, Owner of the convention, made the announcement this week.

Designed to appeal to all cannabis users, – Adult use, Medical and Enthusiasts –the show will operate on April 7 from 11-4:45 and April 8 from 11-4:30. The Reno Cannabis Convention is a unique industry trade show that encompasses the emerging local cannabis community in Reno, Nevada. The Convention, sold out for exhibitors but with event tickets still available, serves to foster industry expansion through advocacy and education.

Speakers include “CannaNurses” Juhlzie Monteiro, RN, BSK and Heather Manus, RN, who will speak on cannabis for children and Loral Langemeier “The Millionaire Maker” and Nevada native who is on a relentless mission to empower people to become millionaires.

Cannabis Nurses Network™ Presents  Cannabis Education for Nurses at UNLV-Las Vegas, NV

Cannabis Education for Nurses at UNLV-Las Vegas, NV

Ticket prices are $25 for a 1-day pass and $40 for a 2-day pass. Sponsored booths will also be available to the public during convention hours. The Reno Cannabis Convention is strictly a non-consumption event.

Shango Brand Expands To California, New Jersey And Michigan

OREGON: Rexroad Marquis Corporation has announced major initiatives for expansion of the Shango Premium Cannabis brand into the legal cannabis markets in California, New Jersey and Michigan, according to a company press release.

Rexroad Marquis Corporation (RMC) holds the intellectual property and brand licensing rights to Shango Premium Cannabis, a leading cannabis cultivator, wholesaler and retailer based in Portland, Oregon, which expanded into the Las Vegas market two years ago.

“RMC is actively pursuing expansion of the Shango brand into these three emerging markets,” Rexraod said. “We will be announcing geographical location additions soon, as well as the expansion of our product base.”

RMC has licensed the Shango brand to production, processing and sales operations in Oregon, Washington and Nevada. The Nevada licensee has continued to enhance its branded cultivation facilities, wholesale and retail sales. Recreational marijuana sales in Nevada began last July 1, 2017.

“These additions show our stability in moving forward with the vision we conceptualized four years ago,” Rexroad said. “The knowledge we gained in working into the cannabis market in two states will certainly help us going forward. This will allow us to more aggressively and effectively position RMC and Shango for success as new cannabis markets begin to open,” Rexroad said. “They will also help us secure the investment capital necessary to grow Shango into a nationwide brand.”

Rexroad will spearhead RMC’s efforts to secure cannabis cultivation, processing, wholesale and retail licenses, license company-owned production facilities and stores, and sub-license retail operations to qualified, licensed organizations that have sought to align themselves with the Shango brand.

Marapharm Wins Conditional Approval As Nevada Marijuana Distributor

NEVADA: The Nevada Department of Taxation, the main oversight body for marijuana in the state, conditionally approved Marapharm Ventures‘ application for a marijuana establishment distributor license, subject to vehicle and facility inspections.

This is the first award among multiple applications Marapharm submitted. The conditional approval means Mararpharm may proceed with purchase of vehicles with essential operating standards that include interior climate control to ensure the integrity of the products carried between licensees and security features to protect product, drivers, and the community during transit.

“Marapharm is one of the first marijuana businesses of more than 80 applicants to receive a conditional distribution license. This is great news.” Linda Sampson, Marapharm CEO