NetworkNewsWire Editorial Coverage: With the rapid growth of the legal American cannabis market, other cannabidiol (CBD)-based products are often overlooked. In particular, hemp has the opportunity to reach medical and nutritional customers that cannabis can’t, and ChineseInvestors.com (CIIX) (CIIX Profile) is tapping into that market. With the potential to provide similar benefits without the same restrictions, hemp products can be sold in markets such as China, where cannabis remains illegal. It’s a part of the market that CBD industry leaders such as Freedom Leaf, Inc. (FRLF) are also catering to, with marketing and media products for hemp companies. Medical Marijuana, Inc. (MJNA), America’s first publicly traded cannabis company, is carrying its CBD business beyond the United States and across the Americas, while CV Sciences, Inc. (CVSI) combines scientific research with a consumer products division to bring innovative CBD products to the market. At the farming end of the supply chain, Terra Tech Corp. (TRTC) provides advanced agricultural solutions and new, better strains of cannabis for a growing market.
The Growing Cannabidiol Market
The market for legal marijuana is growing at an ever-accelerating rate. Recent research by Arcview Market Research and BDS Analytics indicates that sales in North America reached almost $10 billion in 2017 and are expected to reach $24.5 billion by 2021 as more markets are created for both medical and recreational use. But this is still a sector threatened by great uncertainties and limitations. With no legal cannabis market in many parts of the globe, and with the current U.S. administration dominated by anti-marijuana conservatives, legal marijuana represents the troubled part of a larger CBD market.
For companies looking to that wider market, hemp offers a growing option for the CBD industry, one unfettered by many of the restrictions limiting marijuana. A report by the Brightfield Group shows that hemp is likely to become a billion-dollar market in the next three years. Used like cannabis in medicinal and nutritional products, it benefits from a high portion of online purchases – nearly two-thirds of hemp sales happen online.
Hemp also has the potential to reach larger international markets. The American-led war on drugs has encouraged an international climate that’s hostile to cannabis sales, but in which hemp products mostly remain legal.
Bringing Cannabidiol Products to China
One of the companies best set to make the most of this opportunity is ChineseInvestors (CIIX).
Founded in 1999, ChineseInvestors.com is a leading financial information website for Chinese-speaking investors in both the United States and China. Through its website, the company offers a range of investor information and services, including real-time market commentary, analysis and educational products. It also provides support services for companies looking to get into the Chinese market, including consulting for companies considering going public, advertising services and public relations-related support. With information in both English and Chinese language character sets, it provides an accessible presentation for investors looking at China both from the inside and the outside.
This is built around the ChineseInvestors Method, a unique integration of a disciplined investing process, web-based tools, personalized instructions and support. In this way, CIIX helps investors make informed investment decisions and helps them meet their individualized financial goals. This includes a division committed to cryptocurrencies (http://nnw.fm/3pwZV), producing daily videos to inform Chinese investors about this ever-growing and unregulated sector of the Chinese economy.
Its position at the intersection of American and Chinese markets has put CIIX in a perfect position to explore the wider cannabidiol market. Marijuana use is illegal in China, but CBD oils, including hemp-based CBDs, are legal. CIIX is committed to developing and distributing hemp-based products in hopes of helping people improve their overall health, targeting epilepsy, Alzheimer’s disease, cirrhosis of the liver and various other health conditions. With nearly 10 million epilepsy patients in China, products that can help these customers have the potential to become big sellers in a growing market.
In December 2016, CIIX reached a wholesale agreement with a CBD health brand. Off the back of this, it launched its new subsidiary ChineseCBDoil.com. This website went live on Jan. 31, 2017, providing the world’s first Chinese language online store for CBD health products. It provides a variety of nutritional supplements containing CBD, including soft gels, capsules and concentrates available to Chinese-speaking customers worldwide.
Though the company has emphasized the health benefits of CBD products, it is also leveraging its financial and marketing expertise to sell hemp-infused skin care products in China.
Sales thus far have been so successful that the company is spinning off its subsidiary — CBD Biotechnology and ChineseHempOil.com, Inc. — with the intention of listing the new company’s common stock on the OTCQB (http://nnw.fm/Mxi3e). The site offers a variety of hemp oil products, including OptHemp Ultra Premium oil, peppermint-flavored hemp oil in softgels and gummies, and the Gold Plus line of premium hemp oil.
CIIX CEO Warren Wang expressed his confidence in this new development, stating in a press release, “We are excited to announce our intention to spin off CBD Biotechnology and ChineseHempOil.com, Inc. as we believe the existing business lines and the new acquisitions in China, secured by CEO Summer Yun, will allow these entities to continue to grow in their respective markets, while bringing new value to the Company’s existing shareholders.”
Growth and Challenges in America
The company’s hemp-based health products are available in the United States and Canada. Wang aims to double the company’s revenue and expand the business in 2018, with growth in North America as well as China. One of the tools to achieve this is a Yelp-style app for CBD customers. Approved for download by the Apple App Store, it is the world’s first Chinese-language mobile cannabis navigation application. The app carries an easily searchable database of marijuana dispensaries and cannabis strains. Customers can use the platform to review and discuss cannabis products, allowing them to find the best recommendations and nearby locations for medical and recreational cannabis. This will broaden the company’s reach and raise its profile in the growing number of states where marijuana is legally accessible.
CIIX is committed to further research into the use of hemp oil and other CBD products. The company in investing in research and design enterprises with the goal of developing CBD drugs to combat epilepsy and Alzheimer’s disease. The application period for new drugs of this type in China is two to four years, meaning that the company will be able to bring products to market far more quickly than in the United States. If this research pays off, then the company will not only be providing new uses for products in a growth sector of the economy, it will also be in position to launch them in the largest customer market in the world.
Because CBD remains classified as a Schedule 1 drug under the Controlled Substance Act administered in the United States by the Drug Enforcement Administration, hemp sales are regarded as illegal by the federal government despite the growing number of states legalizing it under their authority. Schedule 1 drugs are identified as substances with a high potential for abuse, no currently accepted medical use in the United States and a lack of safety protocols under medical supervision (http://nnw.fm/Nm4CO). This prohibition is being challenged in court, and that challenge now has the backing of a cross-party group of Congress members. The Congressional group’s arguments to the court state that the DEA’s ruling on CBD was an “abuse of DEA’s administrative procedure and rulemaking authority” and contrary to the definition of hemp set down by legislators in the 2014 Farm Bill (http://nnw.fm/Y2EPp). With such strong political support, the hemp industry is optimistic that this case will result in clarity and a lifting of the restrictions to permit easier expansion of CBD-based sales for companies such as CIIX.
The Cannabis Industry Connection
The deep connection between hemp production and the wider cannabis industry is shown by the work of companies such as Freedom Leaf (FRLF). A leading media producer and distributor in the cannabis and hemp industries, Freedom Leaf is a trusted source of information in the sector. The company is involved in mergers and acquisitions in the marijuana industry and has a portfolio of news, print and digital multi-media verticals, websites and web advertising, establishing it as a media outlet and discussion forum for a growing group of industries. It also provides services in branding, licensing and marketing these products, positioning it to make the most of fast growth in this sector.
One of the great pioneers of the cannabis sector in both North and South America, Medical Marijuana, Inc. (MJNA) is also involved in hemp. The first publicly traded cannabis company in the United States, the company also is situated in Brazil and Puerto Rico. This forward-looking company is exploring the medical and nutritional potential of hemp.
CV Sciences (CVSI) is both a researcher into CBD-based medicines and a producer of consumer food products based on that research. It is tapping into a wide range of market sectors through products such as its Purified Liquids products for vaping. Its PlusCBD Oil is the top-selling brand of hemp-derived CBD oil for consumers in the natural products industry.
On the agricultural side, Terra Tech (TRTC) is a vertically integrated, cannabis-focused company committed to cultivating and providing the highest quality medical cannabis. Its research-led approach to cultivating and cross-breeding marijuana strains leads to better products for treating a wide range of ailments. Its greenhouse and hydroponic systems allow the safe, efficient growth of cannabis and other plants in urban farming facilities, expanding the options for production in the CBD industry.
With the wider CBD industry growing, companies such as ChineseInvestors.com are aiming to profit from the growing power of hemp and its legal position in a disputed market.
For more information on ChineseInvestors.com, visit: ChineseInvestors.com (CIIX)
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