GTI Archives - Green Market Report

StaffMay 3, 2021
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Green Thumb Industries Inc. (GTI) (OTCQX: GTBIF) is buying Virginia-based  Dharma Pharmaceuticals LLC for an undisclosed amount. the acquisition is expected to close in the second half of 2021. Dharma was the first operator to provide medical products to Virginia’s patients in 2020 and is strategically positioned to scale in the emerging adult-use market. Last month, Virginia became the first Southeastern state in the United States to legalize adult-use cannabis after the Virginia General Assembly approved legislation.

“Change is happening. We are seeing sweeping cannabis reform across the country in favor of expanded access. This momentum has finally reached the first state south of the Mason-Dixon line to ratify adult-use cannabis sales and we are excited to work with the Dharma team in Virginia,” said Green Thumb Founder and Chief Executive Officer Ben Kovler. “This industry will create consequential economic opportunities and social change in a part of the country that remains void of legal access to cannabis today. We look forward to serving Virginia’s current medical patients, and future adult-use consumers, while supporting the tremendous positive impact that the legal cannabis industry can have on local communities.”

Currently, Virginia has only legalized medical marijuana and while adult use has been also legalized, sales won’t begin until January 2024. With a population of nearly 8.5 million, Virginia is expected to generate over $1.5 billion in legal cannabis sales, which would create significant tax revenue for the Commonwealth and employ thousands of Virginians.

GTI has been rapidly expanding throughout the U.S. Once this deal is closed, the company will have a presence in 13 markets: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Virginia. GTI noted that as one of only five licenses in the Virginia medical cannabis market, Dharma is licensed to grow, process, and retail cannabis directly to consumers. In a statement, the company said that the acquisition includes an existing production facility and retail dispensary located in Abingdon, VA. Green Thumb will also have the opportunity to open up to five additional retail locations in the Commonwealth.

Kevin Gibbs, Partner and Head of Operations of Merida Capital Holdings, which is the current majority-equity owner of Dharma, added, “Over the past two years our team has worked hard to introduce the first medical cannabis products to Virginia’s patients. Together with Green Thumb, Dharma’s offering will expand to prepare for the introduction of adult-use sales in the first market in the Southeastern United States.”

 


StaffApril 30, 2021
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GTI

Green Thumb Industries Inc.  (OTCQX: GTBIF) announced that it has closed on a $217 million senior non-brokered private placement financing through the issuance of senior secured notes. GTI said it plans to use the proceeds to retire its existing $105 million senior secured debt due May 2023 and for general working capital purposes as well as various growth initiatives.

“History has taught us that the winners in new industries are those with the lowest cost of capital and the strongest balance sheets,” said GTI Founder and CEO Ben Kovler. “Our successful non-brokered offering (gross=net) was supported by members of the management team in addition to a diverse group of new and existing high-quality, institutional investors who share in our strategic vision and plan to capitalize on the opportunities ahead. This financing represents industry-leading cost of capital in the legal cannabis industry and strengthens our balance sheet. This new capital will allow us to focus on shareholder value creation through strategic investments to scale our existing operations in addition to accretive M&A opportunities.”

The Notes have a maturity date of April 30, 2024 and will bear interest from the date of issue at 7% per annum, payable quarterly, with an option, at the discretion of the company, to extend an additional 12 months. The financing permits the Company to borrow an additional $33 million over the next twelve months. The purchasers of the Notes also received an aggregate of 1,459,043 warrants. Each Warrant is exercisable to purchase one subordinate voting share of GTI at an exercise price of $32.68 per share, for a period of 60 months from the date of issue.

Cansortium

Cansortium Inc.  (OTCQB: CNTMF) has closed a $71 million Senior Secured Term Loan due April 29, 2025. The company plans on using the proceeds to repay convertible debentures that were due in May and strengthen the balance sheet. 

“Today marks a new beginning for Cansortium as we now have the financial flexibility and liquidity that the Company needs to continue growing its attractive asset base,” said Chief Executive Officer Robert Beasley. “Proceeds from the Term Loan have been used to satisfy substantially all of the Company’s existing indebtedness, including repaying $27.1 million of convertible debentures due in May. These actions have resulted in more than $40 million of cash being added to our balance sheet from the Term Loan and the equity offering completed earlier this month. With a strengthened balance sheet and simplified capital structure, we are now firmly positioned to execute our growth and expansion initiatives in our core FloridaPennsylvania, and Michigan markets.”

Neal Hochberg, Cansortium’s Chairman of the Board added, “By extending our debt maturities by four years and bolstering our liquidity, the Company can now focus all of its attention on maximizing value.”

Mr. Beasley added, “Since taking over as CEO in September 2020 , we have made dramatic improvements across key aspects of our business, particularly in Florida where we have significantly increased cultivation yields, introduced new SKUs and form-factors such as edibles, and expanded cultivation and production capacity to better supply our 24 operational dispensaries (expected to increase to 27 by year-end). Florida remains the single largest limited-license cannabis market in the U.S. and we currently have the sixth largest footprint in the state. I am proud of our team’s early accomplishments up to this point and look forward to capitalizing on the many growth opportunities ahead.”

 


Debra BorchardtMarch 31, 2021
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Earlier this week, the Chicago Tribune ran a story alleging that cannabis company Green Thumb Industries Inc. (OTCQX: GTBIF) was under federal investigation for possible pay-to-play violations during its push for coveted state licenses. The article cited an unnamed source. The story claimed that investigators were looking into campaign donations as the company was seeking licenses in Illinois. No charges have been filed in the investigation according to the story. The stock fell over 11% in trading on Tuesday as the article made the rounds.

The story was relatively vague and stated, “It’s unclear what specific aspects of Green Thumb’s political giving, hiring or other activities are being scrutinized by federal authorities. The exact time frame and origin of the probe were not known.”

In a statement, Green Thumb said it possesses absolutely no evidence to corroborate claims that there is an open investigation by federal authorities as alleged in an article by the Chicago Tribune under a misleading headline published on March 29, 2021.

Green Thumb said it first learned of the alleged probe into supposed violations regarding obtaining licenses from a Chicago Tribune reporter who cited unnamed sources shortly before the article was published. The company went on to say that Federal authorities have made no effort to initiate contact with Green Thumb.

“The Chicago Tribune has published unfounded allegations that completely contradict our corporate values,” said Green Thumb Founder and CEO Ben Kovler. “The reporter did not cite any credible sources nor evidence, and published under a salacious front page headline intended to mislead. This is not just irresponsible journalism but reckless behavior that impacts the livelihood of our employees, the close bond to the communities in which we serve, and the trust of our investors. Our company has secured licenses through competitive state-run programs and traditional M&A transactions. We have taken painstaking measures to scale compliantly as we provide access to well-being through cannabis, and will continue to hold ourselves to the highest standards.”

The article did state that records showed that GTI’s executives and affiliates donated to a number of politicians as well as a political action committee that was instrumental in the marijuana legalization effort. However, that is common practice in every state where companies are pushing for legalization. The story didn’t mention whether other Illinois license holders had also donated to the legalization effort.

The story said that the company also hired lobbyists and consultants with deep ties to then-House Speaker Michael Madigan. Yet, it failed to note that most of the license holders in the state also helped support the fight for legalization by making donations.


Debra BorchardtFebruary 9, 2021
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Green Thumb Industries Inc. (OTCQX: GTBIF) filed a Form S-1 registration statement to sell up to 10 million of its subordinate voting shares. Shortly following becoming effective, Green Thumb said it received and accepted an offer from a single institutional investor to purchase approximately 3.1 million registered subordinate voting shares at $32.03 per share for a total of $100 million.  The sale will close on February 9, 2021.  The company said that the principal purpose of this offering is to increase Green Thumb’s capitalization and financial flexibility.

“Institutional investors are waking up to the great American cannabis growth story,” said Green Thumb Founder and Chief Executive Officer Ben Kovler.“This investment reflects the very real interest, understanding, and momentum behind the potential $100 billion U.S. cannabis opportunity that is happening now. The industry needs more meaningful access to capital to unleash the true economic and social growth potential. The next step should be allowing U.S. cannabis companies to formally list on major U.S. exchanges just like our Canadian counterparts. The U.S. cannabis industry creates jobs, tax revenue, and has the opportunity to address head on some of the major injustices and inequities brought on by the War on Drugs.”

The company did not disclose the name of the buyer. GTI stock was lately selling at roughly $33, near the company’s 52-week high of $34 and far exceeding the year’s low of $3.69.

Strong Earnings

GTI is a leading cannabis consumer packaged goods company and the owner of Rise Dispensaries. In November, the company reported its earnings for the third quarter of 2020. Overall, the company’s balance sheet was strong and retained a positive cash flow for the third consecutive quarter. Green Thumb’s revenue increased 31.3% quarter-over-quarter, and year-over-year 131.% to $157.1 million. The company’s gross margin for the third quarter of 2020 was 55.4%, an increase from a 53.2% gross margin the quarter prior.

The company’s adjusted operating EBITDA increased by 50% to $53.2 million, or 33.9% of revenue for the third quarter of 2020. The prior quarter ended with an adjusted EBITDA of $35.4 million, or 29.6% of revenue. As of September 30th, 2020, Green Thumb’s current assets totaled $159.1 million and included cash and cash equivalents equaling $78.1 million. The company reported a total debt outstanding of $97.1 million, $0.3 million being due within 12 months.

Retail revenue increased by 27.9% quarter-over-quarter, primarily being driven by increased foot traffic in established stores. Comparable sales growth exceeded 65%, on a base of 25 stores. Green Thumb Industries also partnered with the Last Prisoner Project in an attempt to help raise awareness and funds towards the incredibly important cause. The company also announced the launch of the License Education Assistance Program, designed to equip social equity business applicants for success in Illinois.

Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, Green Thumb has 13 manufacturing facilities, licenses for 97 retail locations and operations across 12 U.S. markets. Established in 2014, Green Thumb employs over 2,300 people and serves thousands of patients and customers each year.

 


Julie AitchesonJune 1, 2020
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With terms like “social distancing”, “quarantine”, and “safer at home” orders now common parlance thanks to the Covid-19 global pandemic, it seems an odd time to forge ahead with opening new retail establishments, yet several determined cannabis companies are betting on a better future and doing just that.

 Small business website “The Balance” itemizes the expenses associated with opening a storefront, which include licensing fees, rent, inventory, staffing, and equipment to name a few.  To open even a small business in an inexpensive city or town can cost thousands of dollars. Factor in the extra costs retailers will have to swallow to stay within Covid-19 guidelines for reopening such as plexiglass cashier guards, protective equipment for staff, and restrictions on the number of customers allowed in the store at any one time, and the overhead becomes untenable for many current and aspiring shop owners.

New Dispensaries

Despite these factors, companies like cannabis product manufacturer Green Thumb Industries, cannabis testing laboratory Cannasafe, and cannabis retailer Canna Provisions are expanding their enterprises.

Green Thumb Industries (OTC:GTBIF)  announced that it would be opening its fourth retail location in the Las Vegas, NV area on May 13, as well as the eighth store in Illinois on May 28. This makes for a total of forty-five storefronts nationwide for Green Thumb, with four new locations opening since the Covid-19 crisis began. 

Green Thumb’s approach involves an emphasis on efficient curbside pick-up and delivery strategies to safeguard customer and staff safety. In a May 26 press release about the new Illinois location, Green Thumb Industries founder and chief executive Ben Kovler stated that his company has “continued to move forward through the ongoing COVID-19 crisis to provide jobs and much-needed access to well-being through the power of cannabis during these difficult times, as demonstrated by the opening of Rise Niles, our fourth opening since the crisis began.”

Cresco Labs  (OTCQX:CRLBF) opened Sunnyside River North, the first Illinois adult-use dispensary in Chicago in the prestigious River North neighborhood. Sunnyside opened for adult-use cannabis sales on May 28th for online orders and in-store pick up that day through a pop-up retail experience. “We are thrilled to be opening the first adult use store in Chicago under the state’s new legislation and to provide an example of what normalized and professionalized cannabis looks like with a location in a traditional business district, a local and diverse operating team and a tremendous amount of community input and support,” said Charlie Bachtell, Cresco Labs’ CEO and Co-founder.

Cresco Labs has said it has implemented procedures system-wide to eliminate wait lines, crowding, and social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic and the River North location will launch with online orders only through Sunnyside.shop. Once customers receive a text notification that their order is ready, they can check-in at the Guest Experience Center at 22 W. Hubbard to be entered into the virtual pickup queue.

Meanwhile, Cannasafe has announced the opening of three new ISO-accredited laboratories in Oregon, Florida, and Illinois to help meet the increased demand for cannabis during the pandemic. Canna Provisions has opened a new storefront in Easthampton, MA with another in nearby Holyoke slated to open shortly. Another Lee, MA location shut down due to the pandemic will also be reopening. Canna Provisions is using a quick transaction model involving ID checks, a wireless ATM card reader, and frequent sanitizing to facilitate safe customer interface while offering additional support via Zoom links and instructional videos to help customers understand the new system. 

These considered moves by some of the industry’s best-known names have all of the makings of successful ventures, especially given the attention to the potential infection hazards inherent in storefront retail. Still, as demand for cannabis continues strong and companies build capacity to meet that demand, it remains to be seen whether Covid-19 and a potential “second wave” will frame a gamble on the future of in-person sales as one worth taking or not.


StaffMay 7, 2020
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Executive Spotlight: Wendy Alison Berger

Title: Board Director / Member of the Board

Company: Green Thumb Industries OTC:GTBIF / CannaVu

Years at current company: 5 years / recent

Education profile:

Syracuse University: Bachelor of Science, Finance and Marketing, 1988

Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management; MBA, Finance and Real Estate, 1993

Most successful professional accomplishment before cannabis: Following my entrepreneurial dream and creating WBS Equities, LLC which specializes in ground-up construction, renovation, development, sale-leaseback transactions and acquisitions of food manufacturing and food distribution facilities.  I’m also incredibly proud of having co-founded Illinois Women in Cannabis in 2014 with GTI’s Senior Vice President of Government and Regulatory Affairs Dina Rollman. IWC connects, educates, mentors, and supports Illinois women of all ages and backgrounds in order to maximize their opportunities in the emerging Illinois cannabis industry.

Company Mission: GTI’s mission is to promote well-being through the power of cannabis. CannaVu’s is to provide advertisers the ability to purchase digital advertising while meeting and exceeding state and federal requirements.

Company’s most successful achievement:  It’s hard to choose one “most successful” achievement for Green Thumb but I think what stands out most is how we’ve created the right team to thrive in a highly dynamic and evolving industry, and our diligent approach to capital allocation. CannaVu is the best at what it does and I’m excited about the achievements we’ll make this year.

Has the company raised any capital (yes or no): Yes

If so, how much?: GTI has raised $250 million in equity since 2018 and $105 million in debt.

Any plans on raising capital in the future? We like the position of our balance sheet. With our recent sale and leaseback transactions and the cash flow generated from our business operations, our growth plans are funded, and we are optimistic about our future. CannaVu may raise capital this year.

Most important company 5-year goal: GTI wants to continue to expand access to Green Thumb’s branded cannabis products such as Beboe, Dogwalkers, Dr. Solomon’s, Incredibles, Rythm, and The Feel Collection that help the well-being of so many people. CannaVu wants to remain the premier platform for canna-compliant digital advertising.


Kaitlin DomangueJanuary 2, 2020
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The highly anticipated adult-use cannabis program in Illinois rolled out yesterday morning. The maximum amount of dispensaries allowed in the state for 2020 is 185, though only 43 licenses were approved at the time of the state’s new industry launch. Six of these approved licenses were not able to begin sales on the 1st for various reasons. 

The open dispensaries hosted a huge turnout for those hoping to be among the first to purchase recreational cannabis products in Illinois. Chicago based Cresco Labs expected as such and rented out an entire nearby coffee shop for patrons to take shelter from the cold while they wait. Among one of the first to purchase was Julia Stratton, lieutenant governor of Illinois. She told the Chicago Tribune she purchased gummies at the Sunnyside dispensary in Chicago.

Cannabis giant, Green Thumb Industries opened a store called Rise Joliet in Illinois. Rise Joliet brings GTI’s total store count to 40 nationwide. Founder and CEO Ben Kovler says, “January 1 was a historic day in Illinois as adult-use cannabis sales launched in Illinois, and we’re honored that Rise Joliet is part of that history. Our stores that sell to all adults 21+ – Rise Mundelein, Rise Canton, Rise Joliet, and 3C Joliet – have served thousands of people so far and the energy and enthusiasm from new customers has been overwhelming.”

Cresco Labs announced that they served 3,145 people at its five Sunnyside Dispensaries located in Lakeview, Elmwood Park, Champaign, Buffalo Grove and Rockford, Illinois on the first of the year. They sold 9,258 cannabis products, including Cresco’s house of brands and items from other Illinois suppliers, with the average ticket price being $135.

Though Illinois voted yes to this program with great enthusiasm, many are not impressed with the taxes. This receipt a customer shared from yesterday’s rollout shows the high taxes in Illinois on adult-use cannabis. There were seven different taxes on this purchase, the medical standard tax, local sales tax, local excise tax, Illinois sales tax, Illinois recreational tax on a product with less than 25% THC, Illinois recreational tax on an infused product, and Illinois recreational tax on a product with greater than 35%. The total tax on this purchase added up to $75.85. 

There is also concern that the state is putting profits above its citizens who are medical cardholders. Illinois medical marijuana program launched in 2014. Illinois had one of the strictest medical cannabis laws in the state, but until the adult-use cannabis program patients usually had no problems obtaining their medicine. 

Darren Miller, cannabis advocate, patient, and entrepreneur credits his life to cannabis. He was denied his medicine two days before the rollout of the adult-use program. The dispensary where he has purchased his medicine for years without issue, claimed low supply when he went to purchase it. On January 1st, thousands of folks got their recreational product without issue. Miller says, “They went from about 50 kinds of cannabis flower to three overnight. Then the recreational thing starts and all of a sudden they have no problem finding product to sell for major money markup. All of the patients who have been going there for four years, we actually saw this coming. We called it, and now we are witnessing it.”

The adult-use market in Illinois has been projected by Marijuana Business Daily to potentially generate up to $2.5 billion annually, depending on how many tourists take part in purchasing cannabis products. 

 


Debra BorchardtDecember 24, 2019
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Green Thumb Industries Inc. (CSE: GTII) (OTCQX: GTBIF) said that it expects its Illinois cannabis stores Rise Mundelein, Rise Canton, Rise Quincy, Rise Joliet and 3C Joliet will be open for adult-use cannabis sales on January 1, the first day it is legal to purchase cannabis in the state of Illinois for all consumers aged 21 and above.

“January 1, 2020, will be a historic day in Illinois and we are ecstatic to be a part of it. GTI kicked off the medical program with the very first cannabis sale at Rise Mundelein in 2015 and we are proud to do the same with adult use sales at the same location just four years later,” said GTI Founder and Chief Executive Officer Ben Kovler. “The state has been a leader in regulated cannabis programs, particularly with social equity as a focal point for legalization. We have created jobs, tax revenue, and – most important – access to safe and compliant products for people to improve their well-being. Congratulations to the cannabis and social equity advocates, cannabis operators, legislators, regulators and the citizens of Illinois who have made this happen.”

Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker released the plan for full cannabis legalization in May which is set to begin on January 1. Companies that currently had medical cannabis licenses would get a jump on other companies with regards to applying for licenses.

Two of GTI’s Illinois stores, The Clinic Effingham and 3C Naperville, will only offer sales to customers with a valid Illinois medical marijuana card. The Clinic Effingham is expected to begin adult-use sales later in January pending a special use permit hearing. Naperville will hold a non-binding voter referendum on adult-use sales in March, and until then the store will only be open to registered medical patients.

GTI is rebranding its Illinois adult-use stores to Rise as part of its national retail brand that focuses on well-being through the power of cannabis. Rise Mundelein (formerly The Clinic Mundelein) and Rise Canton (formerly Salveo Health & Wellness) are the first of the rebrand rollout in Illinois. Rise Quincy and Rise Joliet are both brand new stores and are expected to be the first state-approved stores to begin operating following the most recent dispensary license issuances as part of the passage of the adult-use program. Rise Joliet is expected to be open January 1, pending a scheduled inspection in December.

The company also wanted cannabis customers to know that they can expect tents, food, beverages, music and heat lamps to ensure comfort during potentially long waits. Security personnel will be on the premises to facilitate safety. Rise Mundelein and 3C Joliet will also hold patient-appreciation events the weekend of December 28 to 29.

“GTI has been serving medical cannabis patients since November 2015 and we will continue to do everything possible to ensure patient access to safe and effective products during this rollout period,” said Kovler. “Our team has been hard at work increasing production at our cultivation and manufacturing facilities in Rock Island and Oglesby; adding production and retail staff; expanding and opening new retail stores; and adding hours and points of sale at our retail locations.”

Information on adult use stores and hours for the first week of adult use cannabis sales are:

Rise Mundelein: 1325 Armour Blvd., Mundelein, IL. First week hours – 6:00 am to 10:00 pm. Email: mundelein@risecannabis.com

Rise Canton: 3104 North Main Street, Canton, IL. First week hours – 8:00 am to 8:00 pm.  Email: canton@risecannabis.com

Rise Quincy: 2703 Broadway Street, Quincy, IL. First week hours – 8:00 am to 8:00 pm. Email: quincy@risecannabis.com

Rise Joliet: 2903 Colorado Avenue, Joliet, IL. First week hours – 6:00 am to 10:00 pm. Email: joliet@risecannabis.com.

3C Joliet: 1627 Rock Creek Blvd., Joliet, IL. First week hours – 6:00 am to 10:00 pm. Email: info@gticlinic.com


Debra BorchardtAugust 28, 2019
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Green Thumb Industries Inc.  (CSE: GTII) (OTCQX: GTBIF) reported that its second-quarter revenue increased 228% to $44.7 million for the period ending June 30, 2019, over last year’s $13.6 million.  Revenue grew 60% over the first quarter of 2019. The company said that the revenue growth was driven by organic growth across GTI’s consumer products and retail businesses, strategic acquisitions and increased store traffic.

Still, GTI delivered a net loss of $22.2 million versus a net loss of $9.7 million in the first quarter. The loss was attributed to a decrease in value from a variable note receivable in other income and debt-related interest expenses.

“We are pleased to report another solid quarter of positive yet disciplined momentum with record revenue and positive adjusted operating EBITDA as our strategic plan delivers on operating efficiencies from scale. Continued execution of key priorities such as the closing of Integral Associates, accelerated store openings, and expanded distribution of our brand portfolio sets us up well for the future,” said GTI Founder and Chief Executive Officer Ben Kovler. 

Expenses Rise

The company saw a heavy increase in total operating expenses to $32.5 million versus $12.1 million for the same period last year and $26.1 million in the first quarter. The company said that increased headcount contributed to the rising expenses as the company grow and also non-cash expenses related to stock-based compensation of $6.3 million for the quarter.

In May, the company closed on a $105.5 million senior secured non-brokered private placement of notes. GTI said it plans to use the proceeds for general working capital purposes, strategic growth initiatives and to retire existing debt.

Balance Sheet

As of June 30, 2019, GTI had cash and cash equivalents of $135.8 million and long-term liabilities of $153.4 million, plus $96.3 million in total debt.

“We are deep in the chapter of maximizing the levers in our business to drive long-term operational performance that delivers value for our shareholders and the communities in which we operate, ” Kovler continued. “We are focused on optimizing our wholesale and retail businesses, integrating our acquisitions, and further strengthening compliance across the organization.”

 


StaffJune 18, 2019
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Ben Kovler brings his extensive experience managing complex operating companies and his deep commitment to philanthropy as Founder, CEO and Chairman of Green Thumb Industries. Ben founded GTI in 2014 and has successfully grown it into a national cannabis consumer packaged goods company and retailer that manufactures and distributes a portfolio of branded cannabis products including Rythm, Dogwalkers, The Feel Collection, and Beboe, among others. The company also owns and operates a rapidly growing national chain of retail cannabis stores called Rise™.

Ben is frequently featured as an industry thought leader in media outlets such as Bloomberg, Barron’s, Business Insider, CNBC and Forbes.

He is also co-founder and CEO of Invest For Kids (IFK), an annual forum bringing together portfolio managers, family offices and analysts to share investment ideas to benefit children in llinois. In its first nine years, IFK generated more than $11 million to benefit 40 youth organizations that have helped 85,000 children. Ben is also on the board of the Providence St. Mel School and the Academy for Global Citizenship.

Ben earned a Bachelor of Arts in philosophy, politics and economics from Pomona College and an M.B.A. in accounting and finance from The University of Chicago. Ben and his wife, Amy, enjoy living in Chicago with their two children.

GMR Executive Spotlight Q & A:

Full birth name: Benjamin Kovler

Title: CEO, Founder & Chairman

Company: Green Thumb Industries Inc. (commonly known as GTI)

Years at current company: Since starting the company five years ago in 2014, we now have over 1,000 team members across the country – it has been quite a humbling experience.

Education profile: Earned a Bachelor of Arts in philosophy, politics and economics from Pomona College and an M.B.A. in accounting and finance from The University of Chicago.

Most successful professional accomplishment before cannabis: In 2009, I co-founded Invest For Kids, an annual hedge fund investor conference that brings together the Chicago investment community and renowned investment managers to share their best ideas to   benefit children’s charities in Chicago. Over the past 10 years we have raised more than $14 million supporting over 60 youth organizations and 85,000 children.

Company Mission: GTI is on a mission to empower the right to wellness by progressing responsible adult use of cannabis through an authentic family of brands and people-first retail experiences while being committed to community and sustainable profitable growth.

Company’s most successful achievement: It’s difficult to name just one achievement –our incredible team, over 1,000 strong, has navigated a highly complex and rapidly evolving industry to become a market leader. GTI was among the first to go public and access the capital markets, which is just one example of our team being ahead of curve to position our business for the future.

Has the company raised any capital (yes or no): Yes

if so, how much?: Over $350 million since being founded in 2014.

Any plans on raising capital in the future?  We recently completed a $105 million debt financing which was a huge win for our business and shareholders. This type of self-conducted debt financing was the first of its kind in our industry and helps us continue to drive down the cost of capital to position our team and infrastructure for long term success.

Most important company 5 year goal: Continue to lead the industry through fast-paced regulatory change and be a place where our team can grow both professionally and personally – ultimately positioning GTI to generate over $1 billion in sales.

 


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