2018 Cannabis Industry Update
A wave of recent votes across the country enacted "legal" access to cannabis for over 50% of US adults. What spurred this change and what might it mean for the investment industry? Will new laws spawn the next Budweiser, Jack Daniels, or Genentech? What are the challenges and hurdles? Major banks and investment companies are quietly (and sometimes not so quietly) researching the gold rush aka the "Green Rush". There could be intriguing opportunities and most certainly great pitfalls.
CFA Society San Francisco members have created this educational event to discuss the topic with recognized leaders on cannabis market research, investment, and regulation.
Ryan Lowther, Partner, Farella, Braun and Martel
Ryan Lowther has a broad-based general business practice that assists early stage and mature companies in all industries meet their corporate, securities, financing and operational needs. He has extensive experience leading merger and acquisition transactions and working with investors in evaluating investment opportunities. As chair of Farella’s Cannabis Industry Practice, he represents many in the industry, including cultivators, retailers, manufacturers, and investors, in starting, funding, and growing their businesses and addressing the significant legal and regulatory hurdles faced by businesses in this industry. Mr. Lowther works in concert with other attorneys at the firm to assist his cannabis industry clients with addressing employment, environmental, intellectual property (including trademark), insurance, business litigation, product liability (including Proposition 65 defense), real estate, and tax matters. Mr. Lowther received his JD from Columbia Law School.
Morgan Paxhia, Co-Founder, Poseidon Asset Management
Poseidon Asset Management is a hedge fund focused on the cannabis industry. Since 2013 Poseidon has invested in 30+ cannabis related companies across technology, data analytics, agtech, real estate, media, biotech, cultivation, and industrial hemp processing. Mr. Paxhia has developed investment methodology in a highly inefficient emerging industry and created frameworks for analysis based on sub-sector, company stage, capital participation, and other metrics to diversify risk for investors. He has been quoted in the WSJ, Barrons, Fortune, CNBC, and many other publications. Earlier in his career he was in asset management with UBS. Mr. Paxhia earned his BS in Applied Mathematics from the University of Rhode Island.
Cy Scott, Co-Founder and CEO, Headset, Inc.
Headset helps companies succeed by promoting better decision making via market intelligence offerings and operational insights in a sleek, intuitive, and easy-to-use package. Prior to founding Headset, Mr. Scott co-founded Leafly. Since Leafly's inception in 2010, he helped grow the site into the world’s leading cannabis information resource, a model of a successful ancillary brand in this new emerging industry. Along with his work at Headset, Cy Scott founded a monthly Cannabis Tech Meetup hosting cannabis entrepreneurs and technology developers, which has now expanded into multiple regions throughout the US. Mr. Scott received his BS in Computer Science from California State University, Fullerton.
Darren Story, CFO, Strong Agronomy-Coastal Moon Berry Farms
Strong Agronomy is an innovative organic supplier of agricultural wholesale commodities to companies like Whole Foods and the Ritz Carlton. In early 2016, they added medical grade cannabis to their portfolio of organic crop offerings. They have developed and optimized cultivation which guides plants in producing their peak level of disease fighting phytonutrients. Prior to joining Strong Agronomy, Mr. Story traded options on the floor of the NYSE-Arca. He holds an MS in Financial Analysis from the University of San Francisco.
This event qualifies for 1 hour of continuing education credit for CFA charterholders.