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StaffJuly 17, 2018
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So far, 2018 has been a huge year for the cannabis industry; but where is it all heading? In AxisWire’s 2018 Cannabis Trend Report, we take a look at some of the biggest developments in the cannabis industry so far this year and provide insight as to where the market trends suggest they will be headed.

Here’s a sneak peak:

Women in Cannabis
Women are gaining greater ground in the cannabis industry. Women hold approximately 27% of C-Suite level positions in the cannabis industry. The last year has seen an explosion of industry organizations dedicated to advancing women in the industry, like IPW and Women Grow. There is also a growing number of women-owned cannabis brands, like Garden Society, as well as brands marketing specifically to women, such as Whoopi & Maya.

Cannabis Stocks
Bolstered by legal cannabis in Canada and by increasingly impotent federal enforcement in the United States, the number of cannabis companies going public is on the rise. Companies like Canopy Growth and Cronos Group have gone public on the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ, respectively. Additionally, several US companies are gearing up to go public in Canada; including Acreage Holdings, Dixie Brands Inc., and MJIC Inc.

AgTech
Agricultural technology in the cannabis industry is set to see some big changes. Cannabis giants like Aurora and Canopy are starting to build massive grow operations and as such as are looking for ways to increase efficiency and reduce costs. Cannabis growers are beginning to favor CMH lighting over LEDs and HPS lighting, primarily due to its low costs and high Color Rendering Index Score. Automation is also an avenue that cultivators are exploring to reduce costs, including cannabis trimming robots.

Welcome to Hollyweed
Hollywood is slowly becoming more comfortable with its relationship with cannabis. Encouraged by recreational cannabis becoming legal in California, there has been an upswell of celebrity cannabis brands; such as Montel Williams’ Lentiv. Likewise, there has been an increase in cannabis-related television shows, and award shows like the Academy Awards have started allowing cannabis gift bags.

Infused Cannabis Beverages
Beverages infused with cannabis stand to be the next big thing in the industry. Several large beer companies have already expressed interest in making craft cannabis beverages; including the brewing company Lagunitas. Independent cannabis companies have also begun to branch out into the world of cannabis beverages; including a number of cannabis-based wines, such as the new luxury brand coming to market SAKA.

Blockchain and Cryptocurrency
Like other industries, cannabis has fallen head over heels for cryptocurrencies and blockchain. Due to the disconnect between state and federal cannabis laws, some companies have resorted to launching Initial Coin Offerings as a way to raise money. Additionally, larger cannabis companies have begun to develop blockchain-based software systems to help manage seed-to-sale tracking as well as point-of-sale technology.

International Trade
Cannabis’ newfound legality in Canada has led several cannabis companies to seek out international markets. A lack of infrastructure in medical cannabis markets, such as Germany, have presented an opportunity for cannabis companies to gain some short-term profit and some long-term benefits. By setting up in developing markets, larger cannabis companies have the chance to establish a footprint before local businesses even get off the ground.

Music Industry & Cannabis
A growing number of famous musicians are starting to stake a claim in the cannabis industry. Legends like Snoop Dogg and Willie Nelson have launched their own cannabis brands, and business savvy rock stars like Gene Simmons have started to make investments in this growing industry. Some aspiring musicians are also hoping to make a name for themselves by using cannabis itself to spread awareness of their music.

You can download the 2018 Cannabis Trend Report for free by clicking here.

 


William SumnerApril 6, 2018
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Cannabis blockchain is coming to the Empire State. On April 6, 2018, Alternate Health (AHG), a software solutions provider specializing in the medical cannabis industry, announced that it is expanding its StatePass medical cannabis Electronic Medical Records (EMR) blockchain system into New York and that physician onboarding and initial service testing has already begun.

“We have already identified several cannabis physicians to begin service testing StatePass in New York, where they will use the EMR for their current cannabis patients and provide feedback so our programming team can optimize the system for statewide use,” commented Dr. Michael Murphy, Chairman, and CEO of Alternate Health. “Based on the positive feedback we have already received from physicians, we are confident that our presence in the New York market will expand rapidly.”

Currently, StatePass is the only EMR and blockchain enabled software platform on the market designed specifically for the medical cannabis industry.

Focused primarily on regulatory compliance and improving patient outcomes, physicians are able to personalize patient treatment options with built-in automated compliance reporting, which can be helpful in highly regulated medical cannabis states like New York. Patient information is recorded through a distributed blockchain ledger, making it extremely difficult to tamper with or steal patient data.

The company’s expansion into New York follows the initial roll-out of the original system, CanaPass, and FlorPass, which is specifically a software adaption for the state of Florida. Recently, FlorPass was endorsed by the American Medical Marijuana Physicians Association.

“Our New York team is working closely with physicians to familiarize them with the StatePass system and demonstrate how it can be a tremendous asset in enhancing their medical cannabis practices,” said Jay Briggs, Vice President of Operations for Alternate Health. “We are very excited to continue developing our network of physicians and industry experts as we deliver a best-in-class EMR solution.”


William SumnerMarch 7, 2018
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The world of blockchain just got a little bigger today. On Feb. 7, 2018, SinglePoint Inc. (SING) announced the soft launch of its SingleSeed payment bitcoin payments solution and provided an update on ongoing company operations.

Conceived of in 2014, the company initially held off on developing SingleSeed Payments due to a lack of market demand for cryptocurrency related products and services. Now that demand has caught up with the technology, SinglePoint has begun to fully commit to the blockchain/cryptocurrency market.

To serve this end, the company has taken several steps to shore up its blockchain brand, such as hiring serial entrepreneur Kevin Harrington to serve as spokesman for the company’s upcoming SinglePoint Cryptocurrency Exchange; which is expected to launch in the coming months.

Hoping to become as vertically integrated as possible, the company has entered a letter of intent with ORHub, Inc. to develop a private blockchain and has brought Venugopal Aravamudan, a tech industry veteran with more than 25 years of experiences, on to its board of directors.

The company has also begun developing, in collaboration with AppSwarm, its own cryptocurrency currency wallet, which will allow consumers and merchants to use to hold and utilize different currencies. Development of the wallet is nearing completion and should be pushed into testing within the next 10-14 days.

Outside of the cryptocurrency market, SinglePoint has been developing, once again in collaboration with AppSwarm, a cannabis delivery application called Oomy as well as a B2B e-commerce platform for the cannabis industry, dubbed SingleSeed.

The company is currently in the middle of its 2017 audit, being conducted by the auditing firm Turner, Stone and Company, and is expected to complete it within the next 30 days, upon which the company will file its Form-10.

“We are firing on all cylinders and pushing the boundaries to make SinglePoint a highly successfully, scalable company. I hope this breakdown of projects has provided the insight and confidence to our shareholders that we are heading in the right direction. We are happy to be in the position we are in and will continue to take advantage of the opportunities that present themselves,” said SinglePoint President Wil Ralston in a statement.


William SumnerJanuary 26, 2018
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Emerald Health Therapeutics, Inc. (EMHTF), along with its subsidiary company Emerald Health Sciences, Inc., announced today the completion of a letter of intent to form a joint venture with DMG Blockchain Solutions Inc., a blockchain supply chain management solution developer and leading crypto mining hosting provider.

Named CannaChain Technologies, the joint venture will develop a cannabis industry focused, blockchain-based, supply chain management system and e-commerce marketplace.

“There are notable new applications of blockchain technology to validate and assure the source, quality, and integrity of products such as diamonds, wine, and art, along with coffee and other food products,” said Avtar Dhillon, MD, Executive Chairman of Emerald Health Therapeutics, in a statement. “Cannabis is also a prime industry in which to apply blockchain supply management based on the broad spectrum of plant and growing attributes, as well as product innovation potential

As one of the earliest licensed producers under Canada’s under Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations, Emerald brings to the joint venture provide industry expertise and know-how while DMG Blockchain Solutions will use its knowledge of blockchain to build a supply management system design for the unique requirements of the cannabis industry.

Serving cannabis producers, distributors, shippers, government agencies, and consumers; the parties aim to leverage blockchain’s ability to create an immutable record to instill an enhanced trust of origin, quality, and safety.

The platform will aid cannabis business owners to adhere to Health Canada’s reporting requirements by logging each step in the supply chain on blockchain; creating an irrefutable record of a cannabis product’s journey from seed to sale. Regulatory reporting requirements would be automated.

The system will be built off of an existing open source blockchain platform, which should allow for cross-industry collaboration and integration that can support global business transactions. Likewise, the e-commerce marketplace would be based on the platform and facilitate the sale of a broad product selection.

As no definitive terms have been agreed to, the parties intend to commence negotiation of definitive documentation relating to CannaChain; with key terms such as ownership of the joint venture, fees and commissions still needing to be finalized. Development of the platform will not begin until the final terms have been settled and definitive documentation has been executed.

Cannabis Blockchain Craze

Emerald is the latest cannabis company to jump into blockchain technology. mCig, MassRoots and India Globalization Corp. have all decided to expand into blockchain technology.


William SumnerJanuary 23, 2018
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Bit by bit and block by block, more and more cannabis companies are moving into the cryptocurrency and blockchain market.

Today SinglePoint, Inc. (SING), a full-service mobile technology provider that services the cannabis industry through its subsidiary company SingleSeed, announced a letter of intent (LOI) to acquire Bitcoin Beyond, a software platform that allows retail merchants to accept Bitcoin payments through an existing point-of-sale device.

Bitcoin Beyond was primarily developed to service the legal cannabis industry. With adequate banking services in short supply as well as United State Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ renewed pledge to crack down on the industry, many cannabis business owners are seeking alternative forms of payment, such as Bitcoin and other forms of cryptocurrency, to protect themselves from federal interference and the vagaries of everyday crime.

SinglePoint expects the acquisition, which is valued at $1 million, will help allow the company to provide business owners and consumers a full end-to-end retail experience. Built on a popular technology stack with encrypted merchant data and best security practices in mind, Bitcoin Beyond has been designed to easily integrate with existing POS frameworks and allows merchants to add means of payment like Bitcoin or SinglePoint’s own investment property Weedcoin.

“We are thrilled with this opportunity. Acquiring Bitcoin Beyond put us ahead of what we believe merchants have access to now. This platform has by far the easiest user interface we have seen in the market, and we are confident merchants will be quick to adopt this solution as it stands as the sole alternative to traditional options offered to the cannabis industry,” staid SinglePoint President Wil Ralston in a statement.

SinglePoint hopes to continue to expand into the blockchain market and is currently in negotiations to acquire another, yet unnamed, blockchain centric company.

SinglePoint Partners with “Shark” Kevin Harrington

Earlier this month, SinglePoint began expanding its cryptocurrency footprint when the company announced a partnership with serial entrepreneur and original Shark Tank “Shark” Kevin Harrington.

As part of the deal, Harrington will work with SinglePoint’s cryptocurrency division to promote SinglePoint’s bitcoin exchange and bitcoin payment platform. Harrington will also serve as the public face of the company’s national television campaign, which recently began production last week and is now in editing and post-production. The television ad campaign is set to air on major financial and news networks, such as CNN and Fox News.


William SumnerJanuary 19, 2018
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Future Farm Technologies (FFRMF), a Canadian cannabis company with multiple projects throughout the United States, today announced that it entered into a definitive agreement with New England CCS to acquire a 51% stake in FlipCoin, a new cryptocurrency application and Point of Sale (POS) platform.

As cannabis dispensaries across the nation struggle to find adequate banking services under the onerous guidance of the Department of Justice and United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who has promised to crack down on the legal cannabis industry, more and more cannabis companies have begun turning towards cryptocurrencies as the solution.

“Under current US Federal law, dispensaries are un-bankable,” said Bill Gildea, CEO of Future Farm, in a statement. “As the industry has grown, an expensive problem for dispensaries has emerged. We believe the unique nature of cryptocurrencies – based on fast, secure, and proven blockchain technology – has the potential to be a game-changer by solving this multi-billion dollar problem.”

Similar to the credit card processing application Square, FlipCoin will allow cannabis dispensaries to accept cryptocurrencies such as accept Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, or Litecoin as payment. Expected to launch within the next three weeks, New England CCS plans to install the application within nine of its portfolio dispensaries and to white label the application for dispensaries around the world.

Soon FlipCoin will also become integrated with Coinbase, which is the largest broker exchange of Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Litecoin, and other digital assets with fiat currencies in 32 countries. With over 13 million accounts, Coinbase is also the most downloaded app in the Apple Store and is expected to continue to add more than 100,000 new daily sign-ups.

As part of the deal, Future Farm has agreed to issue 120,000 shares of its common stock to New England CSS and another 10,000 shares of its common stock to Derek Ross as a finder’s fee.

Future Farm is not the only cannabis company to join the blockchain club. Earlier in the week, mCig Inc. (MCIG), announced the website launch of its blockchain focused company OBITX Inc. Focusing on combining blockchain technology with real-world applications, OBITX plans on launching KRYP ATMs, which allows individuals to buy and sell cryptocurrencies as well as make cash withdrawals.


William SumnerJanuary 17, 2018
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mCig, Inc. (MCIG), a distributor of products, customized packaging solutions, technologies, and services for the global medical cannabis industry, today announced the website launch of its blockchain focused company, OBITX Inc.

Focusing on identifying and investing in projects that combine blockchain technology with real-world applications, OBITX offers ICO advisory services, blockchain consulting services, and blockchain-related software development. As part of the company’s early investments, OBITX has begun to embark on cryptocurrency mining projects by securing a location and purchasing hardware to complete the task.

“Reminded daily how blockchain is the new platform leading to the next wave of innovation. The technology has proven to be reliable, decentralized, and transparent. It’s a disruptive technology having the ability to digitize, secure and incentivize the validation of transactions. Using our best acumen, we are able to identify, invest and incubate technology market leaders from the OBITX ecosystem,” said OBITX CEO, Alex Mardikian, in a statement.

OBITX to Launch KRYP ATMs and Marketing Tools

Over the next several days, the KRYP Network, a technology company that facilitates crytpocurrency exchanges and a partner of OBITX , will be launching their Initial Coin Offering (ICO). Hoping to capitalize on this growing billion dollar industry, OBITX has made plans to deploy KRYP ATMs, which allows individuals to buy and sell cryptocurrencies as well as make cash withdrawals, within the KRYP Network.

The consultancy arm of OBITX, ICOMethod LLC, has also begun working with several companies in preparation for launching their ICO. In addition, OBITX has developed several marketing tools to help assist companies hoping to enter the cryptocurrency and blockchain market. Those tools are as follows:

  • eHESIVE: a self-serve affiliate ad platform with costing per acquisition for cryptocurrencies and other business networks pairing publishers to advertisers with the proprietary traffic control system, sticky pools increasing site monetization.
  • Marketero: An HTML/ campaign based email newsletter service designed to engage and nurture new and current customers within the blockchain and other networks.
  • Latest PR: A press release manager for cryptocurrency sectors and digital investment., and funding rounds.
  • Blog Certified: A multichannel blog repository serving marketers, brands, and content publishers.

Blockchain Is The New Cannabis

mCig is just the latest cannabis company to jump into the blockchain technology. MassRoots (MSRT) has also branched out into blockchain  as the company eases away from being a pure social media company. The company believes that blockchain will be useful in improving seed-to-sale traceability and will explore that with its new point-of-sale system called MassRoots Retail.

Canadian-based LGC Capital announced this week that it was also creating a platform to utilize “the blockchain technologies to create a reliable and verifiable purchase and payment system and use the Internet of Things technologies to track cannabis product shipments so as to provide assurance to consumers regarding the sourcing and quality of products.”


Debra BorchardtDecember 29, 2017
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MassRoots, Inc. (MSRT) has formed MassRoots Blockchain Technologies, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of MassRoots, Inc. dedicated to developing blockchain-based solutions for the cannabis industry. 

We believe blockchain has the potential to enable the cannabis industry to operate more efficiently and with a greater degree of accountability and transparency,” stated MassRoots Chief Executive Officer Isaac Dietrich. “MassRoots looks forward to being a pioneer in exploring blockchain-based solutions for the multi-billion dollar cannabis industry.”

It’s a big move from Dietrich, who just recently regained control of the company he founded following a messy boardroom coup. Dietrich has been on a mission to keep MassRoots alive amid a failed acquisition of CannaRegs that triggered his ouster. He was able to gain shareholder support to get his old job back as CEO and may even resurrect the CannaRegs deal. Part of his strategy to save the company was to pivot from the original goal of becoming a social media giant like Facebook (FB) to becoming a software, tech brand for the cannabis industry.

The blockchain is an incorruptible digital ledger of economic transactions that can be programmed to record not just financial transactions but virtually everything of value,” according to Dan and Alex Tapscott in the Blockchain Revolution (2016). MassRoots stated in its press release that the most well-known application of blockchain technology has been cryptocurrencies, which have grown to a market valued at more than $600 billion, according to CoinMarketCap.com.

MassRoots has made cryptocurrency transactions over the past year and has turned a profit on the investment. Entering the blockchain space is another way for the company to shift more towards becoming a cannabis software brand.

Plans For Blockchain In The Cannabis Industry

The company believes that blockchain will be useful in improving seed-to-sale traceability and will explore that with its new point-of-sale system called MassRoots Retail. This system was formerly known as Odava, a company acquired from the CEO Scott Kveton who orchestrated the boardroom coup.

MassRoots will also look into using blockchain to improve supply chain contracts. The idea is that with these smart contracts, dispensaries would be able to automatically order more product when the inventory is low for that product.

It could also eliminate third parties in various transactions and create a peer-to-peer system. MassRoots also believes that blockchain has the potential to streamline social network data while eliminating the security risk. The company said in its statement, “This would enable advertisers to better target consumers, reduce the risk of security breaches, and enable the development of solutions that better serve the MassRoots community.”

MassRoots Blockchain is also “exploring how distributed-ledger technology can be applied to proxy voting and giving MassRoots’ shareholders a greater degree of transparency and communication.” Clearly, Dietrich is inspired as a result of his experience in rallying shareholders to his side in his CEO battle. 

More information is available at www.MassRootsBlockchain.com.


Jack SmithDecember 27, 2017
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One of the biggest stories of 2017 has been the rise of cryptocurrencies, such as bitcoin and Ethereum, and the technologies backing them up, including blockchain, a digital ledger system. As society gets more comfortable with blockchain, it appears poised to up-end various industries, including cannabis.
India Globalization Capital (IGC) has announced that it will utilize blockchain, as well as its team of technology and healthcare experts for product identification assurance in the cannabis industry. By doing this, it hopes to solve issues such as improper product labeling, where the product is coming from and other issues that may impede sales.
“We understand the unique challenges facing the cannabis industry and believe that our team has the expertise to be the first to create meaningful solutions to address these issues using distributed ledgers inherent in blockchain technology,” IGC CEO Ram Mukunda said in a statement.
Mukunda added that the NYSE-listed company would it would use blockchain for the rollout of one of its medical-trial ready products, Hyalolex, which is “aimed at reducing the buildup of beta-amyloid in Alzheimer’s disease,” according to the company.
Blockchain use
According to a 2016 Fortune article, blockchain appears poised to disrupt many industries, making transactions simpler and more cost-effective. It’s described as “a way to structure data” and allows “competitors to share a digital ledger across a network of computers without the need for a central authority.”
Citing data from a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, IGC claims nearly 70% of all cannabidiol products sold on the internet have problems with their labels. Some are over-labeled, while others are under-labeled, creating confusion.
IGC aims to provide blockchain-enabled solutions for both dispensaries and consumers, looking at both the consumer and enterprise portions of the market, something that has been an issue as legal cannabis consumption has increased.
IGC is the latest public company to catch the attention of bitcoin and blockchain-enthusiasts. After making the announcement yesterday, the Maryland-based company saw its stock jump more than 100%, giving it a market cap of just over $35 million.
In recent days, companies from all industries have attached themselves to the cryptocurrency craze in hopes of garnering investor attention to themselves.
Importance of Hyalolex
Used for patients with Alzheimer’s, Hyalolex is IGC’s leading product and it aims to use a two-part strategy to commercialize it.
Starting next year, the company hopes Hyalolex will move through FDA registered pre-clinical and clinical trials. In addition to these trials, IGC said it expects to license its formulation technology to licensed cannabis dispensaries around the country, including dispensaries in Washington D.C. and Maryland, with more states to come.
Alzheimer’s disease affects millions of people every year and has shown no sign of slowing down. According to data compiled by the Texas Department of State Health Services, more than 5.5 million Americans had Alzheimer’s disease in 2016, including 200,000 under the age of 65.
In 2016, Alzheimer’s and other dementia diseases are expected to cost the U.S. $259 billion in related costs, potentially rising to as much as $1.1 trillion by 2050.
In addition to Hyalolex, IGC has three other products ready for medical-trial: Natrinol, a natural substitute for Marinol used to relieve nausea, vomiting and appetite stimulation in patients who have AIDS and cancer; Caesafin, used to help alleviate seizures in dogs and cats; and Serosapse, used to help patients with Parkinson’s disease.

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The Green Market Report focuses on the financial news of the rapidly growing cannabis industry. Our target approach filters out the daily noise and does a deep dive into the financial, business and economic side of the cannabis industry. Our team is cultivating the industry’s critical news into one source and providing open source insights and data analysis


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