MedMen Archives - Green Market Report

Debra BorchardtSeptember 3, 2021
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The saga of the once-promising cannabis company iAnthus (OTC: ITHUF) continues as the company has now turned against its lender (and one-time savior) Gotham Green Partners. The latest move comes just as a New York court dismissed a shareholder lawsuit led by Hi-Med LLC that claimed iAnthus had the money to make its debt payments to Gotham Green but instead defaulted and created a situation that would allow Gotham Green to take the company from shareholders. Green Market Report was able to view the case filed by iAnthus against Gotham Green for this story.

iAnthus Wants Gotham Gone

The new case is filed by current iAnthus CEO Randy Maslow in the Ontario Supreme Court against Gotham Green after the lender asked the court to give it an indefinite amount of time to restructure. When iAnthus didn’t make its debt payments to Gotham Green, the lender moved to take over the company. The problem that the reorganization is facing is that Gotham Green has investments in many of the cannabis companies competing against iAnthus. Several states have restrictions against cross-ownership and so Gotham Green is having trouble getting approvals in many states. States often don’t want one company owning too many licenses in any given area so that there is healthy competition and opportunities for less-funded applicants.

The case stated, “Despite the passage of a further two months, approval is still outstanding from four of the five U.S. state regulators, specifically those in Florida, Maryland, Massachusetts and New York. These states represent over 80% of iAnthus’ storefronts and over 70% of iAnthus’ operational facility space. Their importance is only expected to increase in the coming years.” The original restructuring agreement occurred in July 2020 and gave the company a year to get the approvals. iAnthus also accuses Gotham of causing the delays leaving the company in limbo. The only state that has given its approval is Nevada.

MedMen is specifically mentioned as an issue of cross-ownership problems. The case says that Gotham owns approximately 60% of the MedMen voting shares due to the financing Gotham provided the company. Confusing this situation, even more, is that Tilray (NASDAQ: TLRY) just announced it was buying the majority of the outstanding senior secured convertible notes of MedMen that were originally held by Gotham Green. However, Tilray can’t remain on the Toronto Stock Exchange if it owns a U.S. cannabis company, so it can’t convert the shares until cannabis is federally legal. So,  MedMen and GGP amended the restrictive covenants and extended the debt maturity to 2028, and said claimed it was meant to give MedMen more time execute its strategy, but it also buys Tilray more time. Still, Gotham Green will continue to 0wn 9% of MedMen even after the sale and continue to have a board member.

Gotham has claimed that the pandemic among other things was the reason for the delays. In Florida, Gotham cited the Surfside condominium collapse as a reason as well as vacations.

New Lenders?

Back in 2020, iAnthus was in a cash crunch and convinced shareholders that the only way out was to let its lender take over. Now it seems other lenders are happy to step in and help. The case stated, ” the Company has received at least three unsolicited written offers (and multiple unsolicited telephonic expressions of interest) to recapitalize the Company, all of which would
provide for a full and immediate payment of all principal, interest and fees owing to the Lenders and meaningfully better terms for Existing Shareholders than the 2.75% equity interest
contemplated by the Recapitalization Transaction. The debt repayments contemplated by these offers would result in the Secured Lenders receiving a return on investment of over 15% and the Unsecured Debenture Holders receiving a return on investment of approximately 8%. In addition to the Lenders’ return on their debt instruments, the Secured Lenders and Unsecured Debenture Holders hold approximately 15.9 million warrants and 3.7 million warrants, respectively. ”

Hi-Med Loss

Hi-Med was one of iAnthus’ largest shareholders. It alleged in its case that an escrow account set up by iAnthus to cover interest payments was never tapped. Hi-Med also alleged that there was a conspiracy between iAnthus’ former CEO Hadley Ford and Gotham Green to trigger a default.  On April 6, 2020, iAnthus announced it had defaulted on $4.4 million in interest payments to the private equity firm Gotham Green Partners because of the coronavirus pandemic, as well as a decline in cannabis markets overall. The investors said there was an escrow of more than $5.7 million to pay one year’s interest on the 2018 debentures in the event of an iAnthus default. That agreement was amended in September to provide an additional $20 million to iAnthus, according to court documents.

The loss though hinged on the definition of the shares being traded. The investor’s case said that the iAnthus’ shares they bought are listed on the Canadian Stock Exchange and also trade in the U.S. on the OTCQX market. However, the Judge overseeing the case said that the OTC didn’t qualify as an exchange transaction. Still, Hi-Med was given until September 30 to file amended complaints.

iAnthus Gets Stronger

Since the cash crunch of 2019, iAnthus has continued to operate and get stronger by the quarter. iAnthus has reported $227 million in revenue (representing 110% growth) and positive adjusted EBITDA in the five publicly reported quarters since it defaulted in April 2020. Last month the company reported its financial results for the quarter ending June with revenue increasing 57% to $54.2 million. The company trimmed its net losses to $15.3 million, or a loss of $0.09 per share, versus a loss of $24.8 million, or a loss of $0.14 per share, in the same quarter in the prior year.

 


Debra BorchardtAugust 17, 2021
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Tilray, Inc. (NASDAQ: TLRY) has bought the majority of the outstanding senior secured convertible notes of MedMen Enterprises Inc. (CSE: MMEN) (OTCQX: MMNFF) that were originally held by certain funds affiliated with Gotham Green Partners, LLC and other funds. The transaction is valued at $165.8 million.

Tilray said the purchase sets the company up to own a significant equity position in MedMen through conversion of the Notes and exercise of associated warrants following U.S. cannabis legalization (or Tilray’s waiver of such condition). In connection with the sale of the Notes, MedMen and GGP amended the restrictive covenants and extended the debt maturity to 2028 to provide MedMen the flexibility to execute on its growth priorities and explore additional strategic opportunities.

Irwin D. Simon, Tilray’s Chairman and CEO, said, “Backed by accelerating trends towards legalization globally, we are focused on building the world’s leading cannabis-focused consumer branded company with a goal of $4 billion of revenue by the end of our fiscal 2024. The investment we are announcing in MedMen securities today, one of the most recognized brands in the $80 billion U.S. cannabis market, is a critical step towards delivering on our objective as we work to enable Tilray to lead the U.S. market when legalization allows.”

In addition, MedMen separately announced today a significant equity investment from a private placement of MedMen shares and warrants to a group of investors. MedMen has 21 licenses and 25 retail locations across key urban centers, including the Bay Area, Los Angeles, Boston, Chicago, and Las Vegas, and a significant position in California.

Tom Lynch, MedMen’s Chairman and CEO, added, “Our management team has spent the past 18 months executing a disciplined turnaround plan. We are grateful to our stakeholders for their patience and support as we worked to fix the business and rebuild trust and credibility. We believe that patience has paid off, as these efforts have succeeded in attracting partners who share our vision for building the world’s most powerful cannabis retail brand. In addition, the proceeds from the private placement and amendments to the Notes, gives MedMen the cash and flexibility to match our revenue trajectory to our operational expertise and internationally renowned brand. MedMen 2.0 is here, and we are thrilled to embark on the next stage of our journey.”

$100 Million Backstop

In addition to the Tilray purchase, MedMen announced that investors, led by Serruya Private Equity are buying $100 million of units of MedMen at a purchase price of $0.24 (C$0.32) per Unit. Certain investors associated with SPE agreed to backstop the $100 million to be raised in the Private Placement. The money will allow MedMen to expand its operations in key markets such as California, Florida, Illinois and Massachusetts and identify and accelerate further growth opportunities across the United States.

Lynch said, “This US$100 million investment is a game-changer for our Company, strengthening our balance sheet and creating a platform for our future growth. This transaction gives us the flexibility and firepower to match our revenue trajectory to our operational expertise and internationally renowned brand. MedMen 2.0 is here, and we are thrilled to embark on the next stage of our journey.”


StaffMay 11, 2021
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MedMen Enterprises Inc. (OTCQX: MMNFF) reported its consolidated financial results for the third-quarter fiscal 2021 ending March 27, 2021. Net revenue across MedMen’s operations was $32 million, which dropped from last year’s $44.1 million. This also missed the average analyst estimates by Yahoo Finance for revenue of $37.3 million. The earnings per share for the quarter were ($0.04), which beat the estimate for ($0.05). The company said the revenues increased 3.8% from the previous quarter adjusting for removal of MedMen NY Inc. from continuing operations. Net losses were trimmed to $13.7 million from last year’s $24.9 million for the same time period.

“The past quarter was defined by the reopening of retail stores, accelerated momentum in our turnaround plan and a shift towards growth,” said Tom Lynch, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of MedMen. “As predicted, California began to rebound strongly as capacity restrictions in California fell away, with same store sales up 2.3% quarter-over-quarter and April same store sales up 11.9% over March. Additionally, we achieved the best bottom-line result in MedMen’s history. I’m pleased with the tremendous progress we have made. MedMen’s mission is to be the best-in-class cannabis retailer, and we are positioning ourselves to achieve that goal through focus, experience, improved financials and continuing to deliver the industry’s premier in-store experience. Over the next several quarters we plan to both accelerate our growth and move closer to profitability as we leverage our national brand recognition into opening new stores in Florida, California, Massachusetts and Illinois.”

For the quarter ending in March, the company has cash of $21 million. During the third quarter, MedMen raised $18.9 million in additional gross proceeds through non-brokered private placement transactions with certain institutional investors. Also during the quarter, MedMen closed on $10 million in additional gross proceeds under its senior secured convertible debt facility led by funds affiliated with Gotham Green Partners. On February 25, 2021, the company announced an investment, subject to regulatory approval, of up to $73.0 million in MedMen NY Inc., which will predominantly be used to pay down the Company’s senior secured lender.

 


Debra BorchardtMarch 1, 2021
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MedMen Enterprises Inc. (CSE: MMEN) (OTCQX: MMNFF) didn’t completely sell its New York operations to privately held Ascend Wellness, but it’s pretty close. Last week, beleaguered California-based cannabis operator MedMen signed an agreement with Ascend Wellness Holdings, where Ascend would make an investment of approximately $73 million in MedMen NY Inc. or MMNY. MedMen’s shares jumped over 14% in trading on Friday to lately sell at 48 cents.

Following the investment, Ascend will hold a controlling interest in MMNY of approximately 86.7% and will have an option to buy MedMen’s remaining interest in MMNY in the future. Also in the agreement, Ascend must also make an additional investment of $10 million in exchange for additional equity in MMNY. This investment will also be used to repay MMNY’s senior secured lender if adult-use cannabis sales commence in MMNY’s dispensaries.

“We believe the proposed transaction will bring fresh capital and a new perspective to New York’s medical marijuana program and its patients,” said Abner Kurtin, Founder of Ascend Wellness. Ascend Wellness is a vertically integrated operator with assets and partners in Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, Massachusetts and New Jersey. Ascend produces and distributes Ozone branded products.

Of course, all of this is subject to approval from the New York State Department of Health and other applicable regulatory bodies. The state did not approve of MedMen’s attempt to acquire PharmaCann’s operations in New York back in the day, so nothing is ever certain. That deal was scrapped back in 2019. MMNY will also use Ascend’s services for a management agreement under which Ascend will advise on MMNY’s operations pending regulatory approval of the Investment transaction.

Agreement Terms

The details of the deal say that MMNY will assume up to approximately $73 million of MedMen’s existing secured debt, Ascend will invest $35 million in cash in MMNY, and AWH New York, LLC will issue a senior secured promissory note in favor of MMNY’s senior secured lender in the principal amount of $28 million, guaranteed by Ascend, which cash investment and note will be used to reduce the amounts owed to MMNY’s senior secured lender. 

Cowen & Co. Drops Coverage

Cowen & Co. discontinued coverage of MedMen in December of 2020. In her last report, Vivien Azer wrote, “MMEN delivered $20.7 mm in revenue from its 11operating CA stores, up ~34% QoQ and implying ~$1.9 mm per door in the quarter (implying$7.5 mm per door annualized), which we believe is roughly in line with management targets for CA store sales productivity. Meanwhile, NV sales were up triple digits sequentially(192%) due to the cycling of temporary store closures in the prior quarter. MMEN’s OakPark door in IL was the highest growing of the portfolio and we estimate this door could achieve ~$15 mm in revenue annualized.”

She added, “Despite the improvement, MMEN’s cost structure is still bloated and a heavy debt burden may force management to seek dilutive solutions.” 


Debra BorchardtFebruary 17, 2021
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MedMen Enterprises Inc. (OTCQX: MMNFF) delivered its consolidated financial results for its second-quarter fiscal 2021 ending December 26, 2020. Net revenue across MedMen’s operations in California, Nevada, New York, Illinois, and Florida was $33.8 million for the second quarter, up 0.3% sequentially excluding Evanston. Still, the company delivered a net loss of $68.9 million which included $24.0 million of tax provision expense, compared to a net loss of $93.2 million which included a tax provision benefit of $14.6 million in the same period last year.

“This past quarter was one of continued progress. We have continued to add depth to an already strong management team, we have maintained the support of our capital partners, and we continue to outpace the cost-cutting outlined in our turnaround plan,” said Tom Lynch, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of MedMen. “Our company revenue growth temporarily slowed due to retail restrictions in California, but we see consistent momentum across our portfolio, and our significant gross margin expansion is a strong indicator of how we are continuing to build a platform for sustainable future profitability. Over the next several quarters we plan to accelerate our growth on the foundation of our strong brand recognition and the tremendous improvements we have made in operational efficiency and discipline.”

The company reported that the general and administrative expenses were $33.8 million in the second quarter, a 47% decrease from the same period last year. However, revenues are barely covering the company’s expenses.

Company Finances

As of December 26, 2020, the company said it had total assets of $503.6 million, including cash and cash equivalents of $7.5 million. MedMen also announced the execution of subscription agreements with certain institutional investors for the sale of up to approximately $5.8 million of units at a purchase price of $0.3713 per Unit. The stock is currently trading near 46 cents. The Private Placement will be completed in tranches, with the initial tranche consisting of 7,800,000 Units for aggregate gross proceeds of $2.9 million. On December 17, 2020, the company named Reece Fulgham as Interim Chief Financial Officer. On the company’s earnings call Fulgham said, “As Tom mentioned, we did raise an additional $10 million from Gotham Green Partners in January and we will continue to work closely with our Capital Partners to fund the final stretches of our turnaround plan. We also announced this month we are partnering with Moelis a strategic advisor as we look to potentially diversify our funding sources and deleverage our balance sheet.”

A few weeks ago,  Law360.com reported that a California judge again ordered MedMen to pay its former chief financial officer at least $500,000 to cover his legal fees in an ongoing lawsuit over whether the executive was wrongly terminated. James Parker’s employment contract mandated that MedMen pay his legal fees in the event of a legal dispute, which resulted in the notoriously worded lawsuit that exposed many of the company’s darkest flaws.

Cowen Drops Coverage

Cowen & Co dropped analyst coverage on MedMen last week. Analyst Vivien Azer wrote in her last report dated in December, “We take our FY21 estimate to $168.5 mm, and leave our FY22top line estimate unchanged at $216 mm. We raise our GM outlook meaningfully given the progress made this quarter and believe that MMEN could post a ~50% gross margin in FY22assuming continued to benefit from its buying processes, coupled with slightly more stability in markets like MA and IL from a wholesale perspective. We raise our PT to $0.20, implying a 2.8x EV / FY2 revenue multiple. Maintain Market Perform.”

Looking Ahead

On the earnings call, Lynch said, “Finally, last quarter, I hit on my excitement around the acceleration of growth in existing markets such as California and Florida, where we have a number of high profile stores set to open over the next 10 months, as well as new markets like Massachusetts, where we have some of the best locations in the state. We’ve been slightly delayed in our Emeryville openings in California and our opening in Miami Beach, who are hard at work to get those doors open in the next several months.”

“We’re on schedule for two openings in San Francisco, our two openings in Massachusetts, and our significant pipeline of openings in Florida on the back of our ongoing Eustis expansion. We believe we have the ability to open up to an additional 10 stores in Florida this year. And we view our growth strategy there as one of the most exciting opportunities we given our ability to open an unlimited number of dispensaries as we continue to execute in cultivation and manufacturing. We appreciate the patience and support of stakeholders as we continue to execute. And we strongly believe that patients will be rewarded for the bright future ahead of us.”


Debra BorchardtDecember 8, 2020
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After the market closed on Monday, MedMen Enterprises Inc.(CSE: MMEN) (OTCQX: MMNFF) released its consolidated financial results for its first-quarter fiscal 2021 ended September 26, 2020. The company delivered a sequential growth of 31% on revenue of $35.6 million, however, it declined from $39.7 million for the same time period in 2019. On a positive note, the net losses were trimmed to $21.9 million from last year’s $33.1 million.

On the MedMen earnings call Interim Chief Executive Officer Tom Lynch said, “This is also the first quarter in which we achieved positive cash flow after-tax across our retail footprint, a significant milestone for the team. With the strength of our team and support of our capital partners, we are ahead of schedule with respect to our turnaround plan. As we get closer to achieving company-wide profitability, we remain committed to growing the MedMen brand and maintaining our position as the leading cannabis retailer in the U.S.”

The company noted that the increase in revenue was driven by its California footprint, which was up 34% this quarter over the previous quarter. The flagship stores, such as LAX, Beverly Hills, and West Hollywood were up 56%, 39%, and 31%, respectively, during the quarter. The company only recognized partial revenue for its Evanston IL retail store, because of its agreement divest the license to the third-party. MedMen said its pre-announced revenue number for this quarter of $37 million included a full quarter of the Evanston revenue.

The company also managed to dramatically cut expenses from last year’s $71 million to just $24.9 million. The company said it cut expenses by 21% sequentially. Still, MedMen said it only had $10 million in cash as of September 2020 and it is working on new financing.

Money Moves

MedMen has been committed to making big changes as the company works to survive following a year of negative headlines resulting in the departure of former co-founder Adam Bierman. MedMen said it has deferred approximately $32 million in cash commitments during fiscal 2021 as a result of agreements with some of its lenders. During the first quarter, the company said it closed on $5.0 million in additional gross proceeds under its senior secured convertible debt facility led by funds affiliated with Gotham Green Partners. It also closed on $3.0 million in additional gross proceeds under its senior secured term loan with funds managed by Stable Road Capital and its affiliates. MedMen entered into a $10.0 million unsecured convertible debenture facility with certain institutional investors and agreed to sell its Evanston retail store for $20.0 million and received $10.0 million of the total consideration.

Expansion Plans

Tim Bossidy, the Chief Operating Officer reviewed the company’s recreational stores on the earnings call as well saying, “We plan to enhance our footprint further with two new stores in San Francisco, a new store in Emeryville, and a new store in Pasadena. We’ve also nearly completed our LAX store expansion, already our highest growth and most profitable store in the state. Moving over to Nevada, we saw a 192% increase in revenue this past quarter, if tourism began to return without the impact of state-mandated closures due to COVID-19. With the tightness in the Nevada wholesale market, we also expect that the various cultivation partnerships we are working on will show up an improved revenue and margin in the coming quarters.”

He added, “In Illinois, our Oak Park location continues to perform extremely well. This location is the best performing store and the national portfolio in terms of revenue. During the quarter, we made the tough decision to sell our Evanston location. While we were excited about the prospects of the online market, given capital needs for the turnaround plan, the ability to bring in $20 million of cash proceeds in short order is highly attractive to us. We still expect to expand in that market as we evaluate the additional location associated with our Oak Park license. Our final recreational market is in Massachusetts. We’ve made significant progress here on the licensing front. We recently announced that the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission voted in favor of granting us provisional adult-use license in both our Fenway Park and Newton locations.”

Management Changes

MedMen named Tracy McCourt to the new role of Chief Revenue Officer. The company appointed Al Harrington to its Board of Directors. Mr. Harrington is the founder of Viola, Inc., a premium cannabis company, and the founder of Harrington Wellness, a manufacturing company of non-psychoactive cannabinoid products.


Kaitlin DomangueJune 18, 2020
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MedMen co-founders, Adam Bierman and Andrew Modlin have stepped down from the company’s Board of Directors, announced yesterday. This comes after a long series of errors and Bierman eventually stepping down as CEO in February.  

MedMen has made headlines in the cannabis news for the past 8-ish months, and while some issues (like the riots and sales being impacted due to COVID), were things totally out of their control, the general consensus is that the company, especially the corporate offices, have made some serious missteps along the way. MedMen has been heavily criticized in the past for its extreme spending habits and the bottomless need for more capital. Bierman and Modlin have been personally accused of handling money disproportionately to benefit themselves. 

Here is a timeline of some of the missteps and out-of-their-control misfortunes in MedMen’s last eight months, that ultimately led to the co-founders to step down from the Board of Directors:

November 2019: MedMen reports a net loss of $82 million for the first fiscal quarter of 2020 

Per Green Market Report’s article, “MedMen Enterprises Inc. (CSE: MMEN) (OTCQX: MMNFF) reported first fiscal quarter revenue of $44 million, up 105% year-over-year and 5% sequentially. The company also reported an eye-popping net loss of $82 million. MedMen delivered an Adjusted EBITDA loss of $22.2 million for the quarter.

Approximately $7.4 million of rent expense was not included in Adjusted EBITDA for the quarter due to the application of IFRS 16 Leases. Adjusted EBITDA loss under the previous methodology would have been $29.6 million compared to a $39.4 million loss in the previous quarter.”

“We entered Fiscal 2020 on a mission to build a more nimble and financially flexible MedMen,” said Adam Bierman, MedMen co-founder and chief executive officer. “As we right-size our organization and implement an intensified focus on free cash flow generation, our business will become more efficient, in turn allowing us to better serve our stakeholders. Through the successful execution of these goals, we expect MedMen will be EBITDA positive by the end of calendar year 2020.”

November 2019: MedMen Cuts Workforce To Cut Costs

Bloomberg reported on November 15th that MedMen cut 190 jobs, including 20% of their corporate workforce. It also announced the sale of its stake in Treehouse Real Estate Investment Trust for $14 million. 

December 2019: MedMen Sells Licenses to Raise Money

According to Green Market Report, “the company has executed a non-binding term sheet for the sale of its Arizona licenses, which include three vertically-integrated licenses, and a binding term sheet for the sale of a cultivation and manufacturing license in Illinois.

MedMen said it expects to get roughly $54 million in cash proceeds through the divestiture of the non-core licenses. The completion of the sale of Arizona licenses is subject to due diligence, the execution of definitive documentation and customary regulatory approvals. The completion of the sale of the Illinois license is subject to the execution of definitive documentation and customary regulatory approvals.

The company said it will continue to explore the sale of other non-core assets and will focus on deepening its retail market share in California, Nevada, Florida, Illinois, Massachusetts, and New York.” MedMen also sold some Class B subordinate shares for $20 million.

January 2020: MedMen Confirms the Rumor They Haven’t Been Paying Vendors

Former MedMen CEO, Adam Bierman, told Green Market Report, “During that time frame [in reference to a time of growing pains for the company], we stopped payments to certain vendors as would be commonplace in the restructuring of a retailer. We turned over our accounts payable to a restructuring consulting firm (FTI Consulting) so that we could preserve and allocate the cash as we got through and out the other end of restructuring. These are brands that heavily rely upon MedMen for their business. Especially in California, we understand how important MedMen is to that ecosystem and we understand what happens, and the impact, and the ripple effect it has on these manufacturers. They’re having discussions like that with our teams about structuring payments.” The news was broken by screenshots of emails being posted online telling vendors MedMen would not be paying them. 

February 2020: MedMen CEO, Adam Bierman, Steps Down

MedMen announced on January 31st that their CEO was stepping down effective February 1st. He also gave up all of his Class A super voting shares as part of the deal. 

“I continue to believe that MedMen is positioned to thrive. It’s time for our next iteration of leadership to capitalize on the opportunity we have created. This has been an incredible journey and I will continue to be inspired by those around the globe working to make our world safer, healthier and happier through access to legal, regulated cannabis,” said Adam Bierman.

May 2020: MedMen Says COVID-19 Impacted Sales

After releasing a fairly solid third quarter earnings report, on the company’s earnings conference call, interim CEO Tom Lynch said, “Unfortunately, COVID has impacted our sales since the end of March; we’re down in April overall, but have seen a steady increase since. While we’re still not back to our normal levels, pre-COVID, particularly in California, we’re optimistic about our ability to recapture traffic as soon as stay at home orders are lifted.”

MedMen also noted that its Nevada location had suffered saying, “We saw a decrease in overall sales in this market, particularly given the impact that the pandemic has had on tourism into Las Vegas, we’re encouraged about the recent decision to open up cannabis retail again, and have already begun to see a steady ramp-up in revenue.”

June 2020: MedMen Storefronts Looted, Robbed, and Destroyed

The Green Market Report wrote, “according to social media videos, MedMen in Los Angeles had two locations broken into and robbed. The man filming the video can be heard saying, “They are cleaning MedMen out” as protestors or just plain looters leave the store with red shopping bags, filled with the things they stole.”

Hopefully, 2021 brings better tides for the cannabis giant.


Kaitlin DomangueJune 4, 2020
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Businesses across the nation are suffering at the hands of protesters attempting to send a message about the brutal killing of George Floyd. Many protests have been peaceful, but there are many that lead to looting and damaging buildings, and cannabis dispensaries are included. Despite being considered an essential business throughout the pandemic, many cannabis retail stores found themselves in the crosshairs of these looters. 

The protestors describe these acts of violence and damage to their cities as years of pent up rage and unheard voices, stemming from what they believe is a racially biased system against black Americans. The civil unrest has incited the President to release the National Guard across various states. There have been many deaths, arrests, and injuries during this tense time in history. 

According to social media videos, MedMen in Los Angeles had two locations broken into and robbed. The man filming the video can be heard saying, “They are cleaning MedMen out” as protestors o just plain looters leave the store with red shopping bags, filled with the things they stole. 

MedMen did not want to comment on the situation. However one employee of MedMen posted on LinkedIn, “It is not hard for me to empathize with, and I am sensitive to those who view MedMen as a symbol of the inequality that led to the anger expressed last night.” He further emphasized his support for those who feel outraged by the killing of George Floyd, and he himself feels “angry that a group of police officers sat idly by while one of their own murdered George Floyd by standing on his neck for nearly 10 minutes.” MedMen reported Monday that all of their stores will be closed until further notice. They have operations across six US states. 

“Effective immediately, we are temporarily closing all stores and the corporate office to protect the safety of our employees. The safety of everyone in the MedMen family is the most important thing right now, and we are grateful to report that while our stores were damaged, our employees and security guards were unharmed.” The company said in an internal memo, first reported by Marijuana Moment

Jushi Closes Temporarily

Jushi Holdings (OTC:JUSHF) Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jim Cacioppo said in a statement:

We fully support an individual’s right to freedom of speech and the touching peaceful demonstrations that we have seen around the country. We are heartbroken by the murder of George Floyd and the pain it is causing communities across the country that we not only work in, but live and love.

Unfortunately, certain opportunistic bad actors have at times manifested unacceptable behaviors. This past weekend, our Center City and Northern Liberties locations in Philadelphia were broken into, making it impossible for us to safely operate. In addition to these two temporary store closures, we have limited our hours at certain locations in Pennsylvania and Illinois. Please check www.beyond-hello.com for the latest details. It is our hope to begin safely servicing our customers soon from the impacted store locations and apologize for any inconvenience this may cause our patients and customers.

As committed members of the cannabis movement, we will also continue to fight for equality and work to overturn racially biased laws that ruin lives and unequally target disenfranchised communities and people of color. 

Rappers Berner and B Real both reported robberies at their stores, too. B Real Tweeted on May 30th, “Today as a country we hit a low point.  Rioting, looting  and burning down business all during a pandemic isn’t going to make the change needed. It will only set us back. Protest peacefully and remove the instigators that aren’t there in the name of George Floyd.” 

The Chicago Tribune reported that all of their dispensaries would be closed indefinitely either to prevent looting or to clean up from the damage that has already been done. Kris Krane, president and co-founder of 4Front Ventures, who owns the robbed dispensary Mission South Shore, told The Chicago Tribune, “The store’s been pretty much ransacked. Nothing was going to hold that many people back.” Krane watched 30 to 40 people break into the dispensary on security cameras. 

Most of the cannabis industry seems optimistic that they will rebuild from this, and a lot of them say they understand why this happened. “We can replace windows, we can grow more pot, we can have empathy.” said the MedMen employee. 


Kaitlin DomangueMay 28, 2020
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It’s time for your daily hit of cannabis financial news for May 28th, 2020. 

On the Site

Canopy River Tightens Belt, Cuts Employees

Canopy Rivers Inc. (OTC: CNPOF) is laying off employees and cutting back on spending as the company focuses on positive cash flow. The venture capital firm that specializes in cannabis companies said that it is streamlining its operations to preserve its cash on hand.

The company said in a statement that it is making the following changes:

  • A material reduction in the Company’s operating cash outflows, including a reduction in headcount, directors’ compensation, marketing expenses, and general corporate expenses of a minimum of 35% from the Company’s fiscal 2020 operating cash outflows on a normalized basis;
  • A focus on generating positive cash flow from operations for fiscal 2021 (year ended March 31, 2021); and
  • A focus on maximizing returns on existing assets.

MedMen Says COVID Has Hurt Sales

On the company’s earnings conference call, interim CEO Tom Lynch said, “Unfortunately, COVID has impacted our sales since the end of March; we’re down in April overall, but have seen a steady increase since. While we’re still not back to our normal levels, pre-COVID, particularly in California, we’re optimistic about our ability to recapture traffic as soon as stay at home orders are lifted.”

MedMen also noted that its Nevada location had suffered saying, “We saw a decrease in overall sales in this market, particularly given the impact that the pandemic has had on tourism into Las Vegas, we’re encouraged about the recent decision to open up cannabis retail again, and have already begun to see a steady ramp-up in revenue.”

In Other News

Aurora Completes Acquisition of Reliva, LLC

Canadian cannabis company, Aurora, has completed the acquisition of hemp-derived CBD company, Reliva. 

“We are pleased to have closed the Reliva transaction ahead of schedule. The partnership between Aurora and Reliva is expected to create a market leading international cannabinoid platform that we believe can deliver robust revenue and profitable growth,” said Michael Singer, Executive Chairman and Interim CEO of Aurora. “I would like to officially welcome Miguel Martin and his team to Aurora, and look forward to increasing Aurora’s operating scale, international reach, and product and brand diversity while in parallel, we remain focused on delivering Adjusted EBITDA profitability in Canada for the benefit of all shareholders.”

Cresco Labs Announces First Quarter 2020 Results

Multi-state operator Cresco announced a record revenue of $66.4 million in Q1 of 2020. This is a 60% growth over 2019’s Q4. The company also revealed the largest cultivation expansion in their company’s history, adding 6x cultivation space in Illinois and 4x the cultivation space in Pennsylvania. There was a 144% increase year over year from Q1 of 2019 to Q1 of 2020. 


Debra BorchardtMay 28, 2020
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MedMen Enterprises Inc. (OTCQX: MMNFF) reported a fairly solid third-quarter 2020 but warned that COVID-19 has affected its sales.

On the company’s earnings conference call, interim CEO Tom Lynch said, “Unfortunately, COVID has impacted our sales since the end of March; we’re down in April overall, but have seen a steady increase since. While we’re still not back to our normal levels, pre-COVID, particularly in California, we’re optimistic about our ability to recapture traffic as soon as stay at home orders are lifted.”

MedMen also noted that its Nevada location had suffered saying, “We saw a decrease in overall sales in this market, particularly given the impact that the pandemic has had on tourism into Las Vegas, we’re encouraged about the recent decision to open up cannabis retail again, and have already begun to see a steady ramp-up in revenue.”

Third Quarter Results

MedMen reported that its third-quarter revenue of $45.9 million was up 41% over 2019 and up 4% sequentially. 64% of the company’s retail business is in California. CFO Zeeshan Hyder said on the call,Since the end of March, we did see a slowdown in sales into our California stores due to the shelter at home orders and reduced tourism. Accordingly, we modified certain store operations and reduced staff. However, over the past few weeks, we’ve seen a steady rebound of sales, with overall sales per week up over 20% versus the end of April.”

The net loss and comprehensive loss was $76.9 million for the quarter versus $96.4 million in the previous quarter. The net loss from continuing operations was $68.8 million versus $75.2 million in the previous quarter. Third-quarter 2020 net loss attributable to shareholders of MedMen enterprises was $39.9 million or $0.10 per basic and diluted share. Overall, adjusted EBITDA loss for the quarter was $20.7 million compared to $35.1 million in the previous quarter.

On a positive note, Hyder said, “We had a first full month in March of our retail stores being cash flow positive on an after-tax basis. While we expected to be here sooner, we now have a playbook for how to continue building off the progress being made to increase gross margins and reduce store-level expenses.”

Gross Margins Fall

The company reported that its retail gross margins for the third quarter were 47% versus 51% for the second quarter. “The decrease was related to a one-time inventory adjustment we took during the quarter. Without the adjustment, overall gross margins for the quarter was 51%, and if you look at the month of March alone, our gross margin was over 53%, reflecting the impact of our new vendor agreements.” Cowen & Co analyst Vivien Azer asked on the call, “Despite all your costs, cost savings, your OpEx is still running three times ahead of gross profit and now you’re not going to be vertically integrated, which means it seems like you’re probably getting up to margin there though you’re saving yourself some of the overhang on DNA.” Lynch said the company will become incredibly efficient in order to protect the margins.

Financial State

MedMen ended the third quarter of 2020 with $31.8 million of cash and cash equivalents. During the quarter, the company closed an equity financing transaction of $20 million of which $8 million was funded during the quarter, the remainder was funded in the second quarter. It also closed on $12.5 million of additional gross proceeds under Tranche 4 of its Gotham Green convertible notes facility.

Expansion Plans & Closings

MedMen said it temporarily closed five stores in Florida to redirect the limited product to the higher traffic locations but said it fully intends to open those backup. The company also said that it expects to open stores in San Francisco, Emeryville, Pasadena, Fenway area of Boston, Chicago, and Miami, all in the next 12 months; stores that could be at the top of the list in terms of performance in their opinion.

 


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