Medical Marijuana Inc's Brand Receives Favorable Press in Massachusetts - State Progresses Toward Opening of Medical Marijuana Businesses
SAN DIEGO, March 7, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Medical Marijuana Inc (OTC Pink: MJNA) is pleased to inform shareholders and the general public that the firm has received favorable press in two well known Boston-area newspapers as the State of Massachusetts nears the opening of its medical marijuana businesses. Last November voters in the State legalized marijuana for medical purposes and listed several qualifying conditions. As the State makes its way toward the implementation of voter's wishes, Medical Marijuana Inc stepped up its presents there.
To quote The Martha's Vineyard Times:
Some large companies are eyeing the Massachusetts market. Medical Marijuana Inc. has quickly become a dominant company in the medical marijuana industry. The publicly traded firm has acquired several businesses related to the sale, production, and growth of marijuana products.
The company has recorded meteoric growth. In the final quarter of 2012, Medical Marijuana Inc. earned $3.2 million in net income on $5.1 million in revenue, according to its audited financial statements.
Last fall, Medical Marijuana Inc. paid $1.45 million for the intellectual property, including formulas, recipes and technology of Dixie Elixirs and Edibles.
Dixie Elixirs and Edibles manufactures food products including carbonated beverages, crispy rice treats, fruit flavored lozenges, and chocolate truffles, all infused with specific doses of medical marijuana.
Tripp Keber, president and chief operating officer, is actively seeking a foothold for the company in Massachusetts.
Mr. Keber, a former real estate entrepreneur, has visited the state three times in the past year and is familiar with both Nantucket and Martha's Vineyard from recent visits.
He wants to form a partnership with a licensee in the state to build a state-of-the-art food manufacturing operation, and a marijuana production facility.
"The market is probably going to grow to $75 million to $100 million in the first year," Mr. Keber said in a phone interview. "Within 24 to 36 months, probably $300 million."
In Colorado, where medical marijuana was legalized in 2000, and where the drug was legalized with no medical restrictions in a ballot referendum last year, Mr. Keber expects the market to triple. "We'll probably be pushing a $1 billion market here [in Colorado]," he said. He predicts Massachusetts could follow a similar path.
"There's certainly an undertone within the industry," Mr. Keber said. "There is some talk that within the next two years, there will be a movement to fully legalize it."
The medical marijuana industry touts jobs and tax revenue for host communities. A report issued by the National Cannabis Industry Association measured the economic impact of the medical marijuana industry on 10 Colorado towns.
One of the towns profiled in the report was Aspen, a resort community with a large seasonal influx of visitors and second home owners, and a population roughly equal to the three down-Island towns on Martha's Vineyard.
According to the industry group, sales of medical marijuana and related products in Aspen totaled $1.4 million in 2011. The state of Colorado collected $24,973 in sales taxes, and $41,537 in other state taxes, according to the report.
The Massachusetts law does not address tax rates or licensing fees.
Boston Globe Cover Story on Medical Marijuana, March 7 2013
The Boston Globe has seen sufficient popularity within the cause for medical marijuana, recently legal in Massachusetts, to put a favorable article on the cover of this morning's edition of the newspaper. The article, titled: Medical Marijuana Businesses Look to Mass. For Growth features a comparison with Colorado where a booming medical marijuana business is flourishing and a similar ground-floor opportunity may well exist in Massachusetts.
To quote from the Boston Globe:
Tripp Keber, widely considered the king of cannabis-infused products, is also looking East. His Dixie Elixirs & Edibles enterprise earned more than $1 million in 2012 by selling medicated carbonated beverages, infused edibles such as chocolate truffles and fruit lozenges, and other items to roughly 500 medical marijuana dispensaries in Colorado, where medical marijuana has been legal since 2000.
Keber projects his company's sales will more than triple this year as Dixie Elixirs strikes deals in Arizona, Washington, D.C., Connecticut, and Massachusetts. He is in discussions with six Bay State entrepreneurs, including one in Nantucket, to license the brand and technology.
At Dixie's Colorado headquarters, molecular biologists wearing white lab coats work with mechanical engineers, chemists, food scientists, and a chef to create dozens of products in a Willy Wonka-like setting. They concoct a rainbow of elixirs, including sparkling pomegranate sodas formulated with up to 75 milligrams of THC (the active ingredient in marijuana) per 12-ounce serving and mandarin orange-flavored energy boosters with about 60 milligrams of THC and as much caffeine as a cup of premium coffee. The standard dose is about 10 milligrams, so such products are not intended to be single-serve.
Keber has more than 40 employees after acquiring four medical marijuana businesses and is negotiating to take over two more. To support the growing empire, Dixie has hired three law firms, five consultants, a graphic designer, and a security company.
"Medical marijuana has created a cottage industry. This business is growing exponentially," Keber said during an interview in his office, where he proudly showcases Dixie's most recent honor: a fake marijuana leaf in a snow globe emblazoned with the words "Most Valuable MMJ Business," awarded by local cannabis consultants. (MMJ is industry shorthand for medical marijuana.)
"Two to three years ago, we couldn't get someone to return our calls," Keber said. "Now, on any day, we have three to five vendors calling, e-mailing, or knocking on our door wanting to do business with us."
The article also states that Massachusetts is poised to enroll about 100,000 medical marijuana patients within two years – similar in size to Colorado's medical marijuana population.
Massachusetts medical marijuana law went into effect January 1 2013 as a result of the November 2012 ballot where an overwhelming 63% of the voters passed the legislation. Upwards of 35 dispensaries can open within the state – at least one but no more than five dispensaries must open in each of the 14 Massachusetts counties. Expected opening of dispensaries is slated for spring 2014.
MJNA Additional Press Coverage
Massachusetts aside for a moment, another positive article has come out in the Examiner concerning Medical Marijuana Inc. Author Perry Coleman's article titled Medical Marijuana, Inc: How Business Shapes The Industry's Growth reviews the recent MJNA press release concerning state of the industry and prospects for future growth. With his recent articles on Medical Marijuana Inc, author Coleman has done a good deal of in-depth research on MJNA and future prospects for the Company.
Concerning Alcohol & Tobacco, these industries are based on vices and are at risk of users transferring to marijuana products. Companies like MJNA could actually benefit from partnerships with these industries as they have well established marketing and distribution channels. Big tobacco also has the agricultural expertise to grow (no pun intended) the marijuana industry. As a side, current legislation is suggesting that the current federal agency be expanded to include the oversight of marijuana and be renamed the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Marijuana, Firearms and Explosives.
In closing our author Mr. Coleman says:
Medical Marijuana is forecasting revenues of $47M in 2013 and $155M in 2014. That's a whopping 229.7% increase. And with recent sale of the PhytoSHERE assets to CannaVEST (FCLS.OB) for $35M in cash and stock, the company plans to expand its branded product offerings through internal growth and acquisition. As always, make sure you research your investments carefully, and also make sure that the information you get is factual and not innuendo.
Michelle Sides, Chairman and COO of Medical Marijuana Inc was quoted: "We greatly appreciate such quality coverage. Our team has worked diligently and has spent years developing the integrity of its business and core brands. With new products and market expansion on the horizon, we are poised to continue our exceptional growth. We appreciate the continued support of our shareholders."
This press release may contain certain forward-looking statements and information, as defined within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and is subject to the Safe Harbor created by those sections. This material contains statements about expected future events and/or financial results that are forward-looking in nature and subject to risks and uncertainties. Such forward-looking statements by definition involve risks, uncertainties and other factors, which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of Medical Marijuana, Inc. to be materially different from the statements made herein.
About Medical Marijuana, Inc.
Our mission is to be the premier cannabis and hemp industry innovators, leveraging our team of professionals to source, evaluate and purchase value-added companies and products, while allowing them to keep their integrity and entrepreneurial spirit. We strive to create awareness within our industry, develop environmentally friendly, economically sustainable businesses, while increasing shareholder value. For more information, please visit the company's website at: www.MedicalMarijuanaInc.com.
Investor Relations Contact:
Stuart T. Smith
SOURCE Medical Marijuana, Inc.