Green Bits Archives - Green Market Report

Video StaffVideo StaffApril 20, 2018

5min14960

Happy 4/20 everyone. It’s the day the cannabis industry likes to celebrate as their special holiday. It’s become a huge business deal for the industry.

A recent study done by LeafLink predicts that this 4/20 will be the first ever to have retail sales top $1B, even reaching as high as $1.2B, based on their wholesale marketplace figures. According to Flowhub, in 2017, total sales of cannabis by consumers on 4/20 represented a 44 percent increase from an average Thursday and 30 percent more than an average Friday.

The big news this week had to do with biotech company GW Pharmaceuticals. The company received very positive comments from the FDA. That left many market watchers with the feeling that the FDA will ultimately approve GW’s drug epidiolex for pharmaceutical sales in the U.S. While some believe this means that marijuana would immediately be removed from the controlled substances list. Think again. That still has to be done by Congress. However, it’s hard to argue that marijuana has no medicinal purposes, which is part of the schedule 1 designation if you can get a legal prescription for it.

Green Bits, headquartered in San Jose, announced it has raised a $17 million Series A funding round, led by Tiger Global, the New York-based investment firm, along with participation by Snoop Dogg’s Casa Verde Capital.

Medicine Man Technologies (MDCL) announced today the preliminary financial results for the quarter The company reported approximately $1.2 million in revenue for the quarter, a 122% increase over the same quarter last year and representing the fifth consecutive quarter of revenue growth.

Ontario-based Aphria Inc. (APHQF) reported that its revenues for the third quarter ending February 28 were C$10.2 million versus last year’ C$5.1 million for the same time period, an increase of 100%. Revenue increased 20% sequentially from C$8.5 million.

MassRoots filed its annual report on Tuesday but didn’t get around to the company’s financials in the filing until page 24. Gross revenue for the year fell 54% to $319,242, while the net losses ballooned 146% to $44 million. In all of this mess, CEO Isaac Dietrich awarded himself a bonus of $190,659 on top of his salary of $96,971. While Mr. Dietrich’s monthly salary was decreased from 2016, his total compensation jumped from $107,917 in 2016 to $287,630 in 2017.

Lots of acquisitions to report…..

MPX Bioceutical Corporation  (MPXEF)  signed a letter of intent to acquire all the issued and outstanding shares of private company Canveda Inc., a Licensed Producer under Health Canada’s Access to Cannabis.

CannaRoyalty  is buying FloraCal Farms (“FloraCal”), a licensed ultra-premium craft cannabis producer located in Sonoma County, California for US$1 million and 3,million + CannaRoyalty shares

Livewell Foods Canada announced that it entered into a C$10 million private placement deal.

Civilized Worldwide Inc. announced that it executed a strategic investment and collaboration agreement with Canopy Rivers Corporation where they will invest C$5 million in Civilized via a convertible debenture and the companies will work together on various online, media and event mandates relating to the cannabis industry.


Jack SmithJack SmithApril 18, 2018
greenbits.jpg

6min13860

When it comes to his music career and his well-known love of marijuana, Snoop Dogg has lived by the motto “the more medicated, the more dedicated.” Now, the affable rapper is applying that to his investing career, investing cannabis software company Green Bits.

Green Bits, headquartered in San Jose, announced it has raised a $17 million Series A funding round, led by Tiger Global, the New York-based investment firm, along with participation by Snoop Dogg’s Casa Verde Capital.

“We are honored and excited to have Tiger Global join our team. We have grown quickly in a short period, and this new capital will allow us to exponentially accelerate our growth. Our goal is to be in every state that has legalized cannabis in some way,” said Ben Curren,
co-founder and chief executive officer of Green Bits

Tiger Global, run by billionaire Chase Coleman, has started to venture outside of traditional public market investing, investing in private companies such as question and answer website Quora, job searching company Glassdoor and Airbnb, among others.

In total, Tiger Global has made 234 investments, nearly half the time being the lead investor, according to data compiled by Crunchbase.

It has also exited 35 of those investments, including companies such as Spotify, which recently went public on the New York Stock Exchange in an untraditional manner, mobile game developer Zynga and real estate company Redfin.

Prior to putting money into Green Bits, Casa Verde has made 9 other investments, investing as the lead investor 4 times. The fund, which mostly acts as a seed stage investor, has raised $45 million to invest in “the ancillary cannabis industry,” according to Crunchbase.  “We couldn’t be more excited to reinvest in Green Bits. This round brings tremendous validation not only to Green Bits but also to the cannabis industry,” said Casa Verde Capital’s Managing Partner, Karan Wadhera.

These investments can include a number of different areas, including agtech, health & wellness, financial services and more.

With the $17 million in new funding, Green Bits, which has similarities to the Jack Dorsey-led financial service provider Square, has raised $19.3 million in total outside funding. A source close to the matter said the new funding round demonstrates Green Bits “continued adoption and growth within the rapidly expanding legal cannabis industry.”

The source also noted that this is the first funding round in the cannabis space led by an institutional investor, noting “hedge funds and venture capitalists have been known to steer away from this market.”

Currently, Green Bits serves 11 different states, with its software available in Alaska, Arizona, California and 8 other states. On the company’s website, it says it has processed more than $2 billion in annual sales, with its software and services available at 800 retailers.

The funding announcement follows news that former Speaker of the House John Boehner has joined the board of directors of of Acreage Holdings. Boehner, who had been staunchly anti-cannabis, said on Twitter that his “thinking on cannabis has evolved.”


Debra BorchardtDebra BorchardtFebruary 23, 2018
greenbits.jpg

6min21730

After selling his accounting software company Outright to website behemoth GoDaddy, entrepreneur Ben Curren thought he’d take a couple of years off. But three months into his break, he got bored. He decided to look back through his “idea book” where he would jot down various inspirations and saw the comment “look into cannabis.”

This was the genesis of the creation of Green Bits, that bills itself as the “Square” of cannabis. He did “look into cannabis” and his research showed him an emerging industry that had a huge number of complicated challenges on the retail side. His background in accounting, compliance and helping small businesses fit nicely with the skills required to tackle the industry problems.

Curren created a one-page flyer addressing the industry pain points and how to solve them. He sent it to license holders in Washington essentially saying, “Hey, we’re building this, are you interested?” To his surprise, people responded even though he didn’t have the product built. The process of asking potential customers what they needed as he was building it, helped Green Bits to deliver a strong end result. “This process helped us get our first 15 customers,” said Curren. This was 2014 before the dispensaries had actually opened. “These customers helped my funding to get this thing built,” he said.

Fast forward to today and Green Bits serves more than 800 legal cannabis retailers in seven states. The company processes more than $2 billion in annual sales through its point-of-sale system. In just a few short years, Green Bits is beginning to surpass its competitors in the number of dispensaries it works with.

The software is subscription-based and tracks inventory of marijuana for retail dispensaries and automatically provides information to the government in order to make sure the businesses are in compliance with state rules. The software also helps dispensary owners manage cash flow and inventory. The product can provide customer verification at check-in and automatically limits transactions from states where cannabis is illegal. Green Bits works with all the seed-to-sale tracking systems as well. Taking the information from these programs and then funneling that through to the proper authorities.

Curren wrote most of the original code himself with some help from his Outright coders that were working at GoDaddy.com at the time. These original founders worked during their off hours and took vacation time from GoDaddy as the dispensaries went live. They no longer work at GoDaddy.

The curse and the blessing for this serial entrepreneur was the limitation of licenses. The small number of licenses kept the company’s growth in check, but the blessing was that the slowness allowed Curren to bootstrap the company. “I didn’t have to dump in a half million dollars at once,” he said. “I could do small amounts as necessary to build the company. Now we’re around 45 people serving almost a thousand dispensaries.”

Beating The Competition

MJ Freeway and BioTrack are his biggest competitors. These companies were created earlier than Green Bits, but he wasn’t intimidated. “BioTrack and MJ Freeway pretty much ran all the dispensaries in the state of Washington. We went after the recreational market and they were in the medical. In less than four years, we took 80% of the market away from them” said Curren. “The same thing is happening in Oregon.”

The limitation of licenses is the biggest challenge for this growing company. “We need the market to be larger in order to be a large technology company,” said Curren. Ideally, he’d like to get to ten thousand dispensaries, but of course, there aren’t even that many in the country at this time.

While the Green Bits strives to protect its customers from the headaches of compliance, even this company concedes that the current situation in Washington state goes beyond what it can do. The transition from BioTrack to Leaf Data has been problematic. “It’s definitely challenging,” he said, “But Washington has the second most sales of any state. You’re moving from Biotrack that went from 5 dispensaries to 400. It grew slowly. Leaf Data has had to take it over right away when everything was already running.” Leaf Data has made the same argument when answering criticism over the problems of the transition.

Curren said it was 100% impacting businesses. He added, “It’s quite costly for us to work around these issues, but things have been improving over the past week.” In the meantime, Green Bits will continue to protect its customers from the pains of being in the cannabis industry.



About Us

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


READ MORE



Recent Tweets

@GreenMarketRpt – 18 hours

RT : We’re proud to have offered 20,000 hours of free services to the surrounding community and given $250,000-wort…

@GreenMarketRpt – 18 hours

RT : I chatted with about how while the industry has faced challenges this year, it’s still undoubtedly growing.…

@GreenMarketRpt – 20 hours

Exchange Traded Note Launched By REX Shares

Back to Top

You have Successfully Subscribed!