The Fresh Toast Seeks Funding as Cannabis Media Heats Up

With adult use cannabis sales set to become legal in Canada later this month, the world of cannabis media is starting to heat up. Most recently, High Times announced that it would acquire DOPE Media for $11.2 million and the cannabis lifestyle platform PRØHBTD announced that it secured roughly $12 million in investment. As entrepreneurs and investors alike are looking for ways to corner this emerging market, one cannabis publication hoping to get a piece of this investor action is The Fresh Toast.

Headquartered in Seattle, Washington, The Fresh Toast (TFT) was founded by JJ McKay, a lifelong entrepreneur, and publisher with a background in company building and consumer marketing. Supporting TFT is a team of experienced journalists and executives, including TFT President Eric Snow.

JJ McKay, Founder of Fresh Toast

Billed as a lifestyle website with a side of cannabis, TFT aims to become one of the most trusted voices in the cannabis by appealing to the majority of cannabis users who don’t fall into the stereotypical stoner/counter-culture mindset.

To that end, TFT produces content for the curious and casual cannabis user, with articles ranging from hard cannabis news to everyday pop culture. So far, the strategy seems to be working. The Fresh Toast has 3 identified streams of income with the directory being the primary followed by advertising and data.  Currently, it ranks as the number three trafficked directory site and has emerged as one of the top six digital cannabis websites.

Since launching in 2016, TFT has secured syndication partnerships with 1,800 daily newspapers and regional television stations, inked a syndication deal with Men’s Health Magazine, and became the first cannabis publication to run beer and wine advertisements.

Earlier this year, TFT formed an exclusive media partnership with Skipta, a social network of specialized online medical communities for verified healthcare professionals, to provide information on cannabinoid medicine to over 800,000 medical professionals throughout the United States.

In terms of audience, approximately 1.8 million people visit TFT every month, with roughly a quarter of visitors going to the site daily. Demographically speaking, 45% of site visitors are women, and 75% of all traffic comes from those under the age of 50.

Hoping to build off of their success, TFT is seeking to raise $2.5 million in a Series A Seed Round and is offering 900,000 incentive compensation units, which will be converted into stock options upon the closing of Series A.

Already TFT has attracted several high-profile investors and supporters, including former Seattle Times President, Carolyn Kelly; Dan Nordstrom; former EVP/ President Alaska Air Group, Glenn Johnson; John Hudak, Senior Fellow at The Brookings Institution; and even a former U.S. Surgeon General.

Once equity funding is secured, TFT expects to become profitable within a year. The end goal for TFT is a 2021 transition event just as the cannabis market in states like Florida and California start to mature. With fundraising still ongoing, interested investors may contact jj@thefreshtoast.com for more information.

Full Disclosure: Fresh Toast reprints the Marijuana Money weekly video from Green Market Report.

William Sumner

William Sumner

William Sumner is a freelance writer specializing in the legal cannabis industry. You can follow William on Twitter @W_Sumner or on Medium.


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