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The Crypto-Cannabis Connection

The Crypto-Cannabis Connection
April 20, 2022

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Giggle weed. Devil’s lettuce. Ganja. Whatever you call it, cannabis is no laughing matter. Despite still being illegal federally, the product is predicted to generate $100BN annually in the U.S. by the end of the decade. Today, we’re looking at the alternative solutions to raising capital and going public for founders and investors in the legally hazy space.

One investment fund thinking outside the box is Luxembourg-based venture fund Global Cannabis Capital, which invests primarily in Latin America. The fund considered a traditional IPO through cannabis-friendly Canada but is opting instead to sell tokens on the Ethereum blockchain to act as equity in the company. Come to think of it, the early adopters and vocal proponents of cannabis and crypto seem to be one and the same–just look at Elon Musk.

Cannabis-related NFTS are also on the rise, with cannabis companies looking for more ways to grow connections with their buyers, including coining the first record of a particular strain.

With traditional banks backed by the Federal Reserve staying on the sidelines, crypto is jumping feet first into weed startups. Coins dedicated specifically to the purchase of marijuana have been in rotation since 2014. But the popularity and demand of crypto for purchases at dispensaries aren’t all that high.

For other cannabis startups seeking the green light on public trading, there are always SPACs. Leafly, the e-commerce brand for weed, went public through a SPAC merger in February and has modest but positive returns thus far.

Some companies are still raising money the old-fashioned way. CANN is a THC & CBD beverage company that–get this–comes in a can. Gwenyth Paltrow and Adam Levine of Maroon Five are investors (and promoters). Then there’s Backbone. You wouldn’t know by quickly looking at its website, but it’s not your average software startup. The company supplies the software and know-how for cannabis companies to get off the ground.

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Since last week, PrivCo has added:
1,472 Companies | 231 Funding Activities | 136 M&A Deals

Funding & Deal Highlights:

Optimal Dynamics raises $33MM from Westly Group

Big Data • Round B • New York, NY  

Medikabazaar raises $65MM from Lighthouse India

Health Care Products • Equity • Mumbai, India

Be Biopharma raises $130MM from Arch Venture

Drug Research • Round B • Cambridge, MA raises $25MM from Seven Seven Six

Scheduling • Round A • San Francisco, CA

Stem raises $20MM from QED Investors

Payments • Equity • Los Angeles, CA

Blue Spark raises $40MM from Ghost Tree

Batteries • Equity • Westlake, OH  

Unlearn.AI raises $50MM from Insight Partners

Artificial Intelligence • Round B • San Francisco, CA

Laiye raises $160MM from Hopu Magnolia

Robotics • Round C • Beijing, China

Strivr raises $35MM from Georgian Capital

Virtual Reality • Round B-1 • Palo Alto, CA

CoinDCX raises $135MM from Steadview

Cryptocurrency • Round D • Mumbai, India

Westinghouse announces acquisition of BHI Energy

Industrial • Acquisition • East Weymouth, MA

Cary Street Partners acquires National Wealth Management

Investment Management • Acquisition • Florham, NJ 

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