Cannabis Investors Growing Faster Than The Deals

FORBES

[Privateer Holdings] made headlines recently when it secured an $75 million investment from the Founders Fund, a San Francisco based venture capital firm. Founders Fund has picked some winners in the past including Facebook, Airbnb, Spotify and SpaceX. Getting an investment from this group is like receiving the investing seal of approval. This brings Privateer’s total funding to $82 million, which isn’t bad considering the company was just founded in 2010.

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PC MAG

I was interested to hear Founders Fund partner Geoff Lewis and Privateer Holdings CEO Brendan Kennedy discuss cannabis startups including Leafly, an information site which focuses on particular strains to aid specific cancers; Tilray, a pharmaceutical grade cannabis grower in Canada; and Marley Natural, a retail brand based on a Jamaican strained, produced under license from Bob Marley's estate.   He said he thought it was only a matter of time before legalization spreads in more places.

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WIRED

To cater to the sensibilities of mainstream consumers, Privateer has raised more than $80 million to fund a portfolio of pot-related companies that reflect the firm’s emphasis on professionalism. Its investments include Tilray, a Canadian mail-order medical marijuana service; Leafly, a kind of Yelp for pot; and Marley Natural, a marijuana and marijuana accessories brand founded in cooperation with Bob Marley’s family.

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TECHCRUNCH

“When you look at America, our fundamental thesis is that this is a mainstream product consumed by mainstream Americans,” said Brendan Kennedy, Privateer’s CEO, today at TechCrunch Disrupt NY. “Fifty four to 58 percent of Americans believe that this product should be legal. About 85 percent believe that medical cannabis should be legal. You can’t get 85 percent of Americans to agree on anything.”

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TECHCRUNCH

Brendan Kennedy is the co-founder of Privateer Holdings, a private equity firm that invests in marijuana startups. Geoff Lewis is a partner at Peter Thiel’s prestigious Founders Fund, which backs Privateer. In this video, I ask them about the potential of a bunch of weed startup ideas. They’re about to kill your buzz.

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THE SEATTLE TIMES

I talked with Brendan Kennedy, co-founder of Privateer Holdings, just before the Thiel investment became official. With an influx of capital, Kennedy was enthusiastic about new marijuana brands (he is rolling out a Bob Marley line) and in developing markets in Jamaica and Uruguay. Privateer has a 60,000-square-foot grow farm in Nanaimo, B.C., and is getting pitched by new companies daily.

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INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TIMES

Today, [Brendan Kennedy is] CEO of Privateer Holdings, the investment firm that made a name for itself through a partnership with Bob Marley’s family and recently closed a $75 million round of funding. It’s all part of a mission to help make marijuana mainstream through strategic investing. Their strategy has compelled some observers to call Privateer the “Procter & Gamble of the cannabis industry.”

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FORTUNE

The marijuana investment company recently closed a $75 million fundraising round that included the Founders Fund, an investment firm created by PayPal cofounder Peter Thiel, taking a multi-million dollar stake. The investment was a big one for both Privateer and the cannabis industry on the whole because it represented the first major institutional funding in a marijuana company.