WINNIPEG, June 18, 2019 /PRNewswire/ - Bridging Finance Inc., one of North America's leading infrastructure firms for First Nations and Inuit, is working with Peguis First Nation to bring safe Cannabis retail options to First Nation communities. The two organizations have engaged POPCANN to ensure that the sale of Cannabis is done in a secure manner that protects First Nation youth and eliminates black market product.
"Cannabis was legalized across Canada close to a year ago, but access to safe, legal product through retail has until now been limited to major urban centres, leaving rural communities at a disadvantage," said David Sharpe, CEO of Bridging Finance Inc. "We've worked closely with Chief Hudson to ensure we're doing something for the good of First Nation communities, and POPCANN is a great partner to help facilitate this endeavor." To date, Bridging has allocated over $300 million to finance renewable energy, housing, grocery stores and fisheries to Indigenous communities.
The partnership aims to provide safe, controlled Cannabis retail stores that are compliant with both community and regionally imposed regulations, while at the same time providing elected Chief and Bands control over the sale of Cannabis within their communities.
The collaboration will also enable the three entities to work with various levels of government to establish dialogue and collaboration with regulators concerning cannabis related activities and policies within indigenous communities.
"First Nation communities do not have the same commercial and retail infrastructure that are ubiquitous in larger cities, adding an additional challenge," said Chief Hudson, elected Chief of Peguis First Nation. "POPCANN's prefabricated Cannabis retail stores offer a turnkey solution that means fast and secure access to safe quality Cannabis in our communities and the eradication of black market product."
The first stores are expected to be operational by fall, 2019.
Located approximately 190 KM North of Winnipeg, Peguis First Nation is home to Manitoba's largest First Nation population. In total, there are approximately 11,000 Peguis Band Members, which includes membership both on and off-reserve and comprising mainly of Ojibway and Cree descent.
About Bridging Finance Inc.
Bridging Finance is a privately held Canadian company providing middle-market North American companies with alternatives to the financing options offered by traditional lenders. Lending proceeds, typically ranging from $3,000,000 to $50,000,000 and higher, are used by companies to address short-term needs such as restructuring existing debt, providing working capital for growth, supporting inventory purchases and financing expenditures and acquisitions/buyouts. Bridging Finance is the manager of the Bridging Income Fund LP and the Bridging Mid-Market Debt Fund LP, Bridging Infrastructure Fund LP, and Bridging Real Estate Lending Fund LP. Bridging Finance also offers portfolio management services for institutional and family office clients. Bridging Finance's total assets under management are over $1.4 Billion.
POPCANNs are the only prefabricated Cannabis retail stores available in the North American marketplace for both pop-up and permanent installations. POPCANN's mission is to provide turn-key Cannabis retail stores that rapidly bring legal Cannabis to traditional and alternative destinations.
POPCANNs are made to solve problems for diverse Cannabis stakeholders, including government regulators and the general public. Modular designs enable POPCANN to bring legal Cannabis to northern cities, Indigenous communities, music festivals, and seasonal towns.
The POPCANN Corporation, headquartered in Toronto, Canada, was co-founded in 2019 by veteran media and technology entrepreneurs Michael Girgis and Jake Neiman.