NetworkNewsWire Editorial Coverage: There is no denying that cannabis is an increasingly red-hot market, and savvy companies are finding diverse ways to serve cannabis users, producers and vendors alike. Many companies in the cannabis industry don’t cultivate or sell marijuana, instead offering investors the ability to take advantage of vertical opportunities ranging from payment solutions, accessories, technology, medicine and more. Standouts in the diverse cannabis industry include Global Payout, Inc. (GOHE) (GOHE Profile), Kush Bottles, Inc. (KSHB), General Cannabis Corp. (CANN), MassRoots, Inc. (MSRT) and Arena Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (ARNA).
Providing payments and transaction services to the cannabis industry, Global Payout, Inc. (GOHE) is addressing a key need for cannabis vendors and consumers without ever touching the marijuana plant.
Because marijuana remains classified as a Schedule 1 drug under the Controlled Substances Act, companies selling marijuana and cannabis products labor under the disadvantage of limited – if any – access to traditional banking options. Being forced to deal in cash poses various challenges to merchants, and is hugely inconvenient for cannabis consumers. As a solution to these obstacles, Global Payout, through its MoneyTrac Technology, Inc. subsidiary, has paved a detour around this federal blockade to enable cannabis businesses to utilize the banking services they need (http://nnw.fm/1zZEf).
MoneyTrac’s payment platform resolves issues relating to regulatory compliance and transactional processing and tracking, and the platform’s capabilities have various ancillary services, including bill pay and loyalty. Through affiliated partnerships, MoneyTrac offers cannabis businesses and other high-risk merchants an audited and fully compliant banking system through which they can apply for bank accounts. MoneyTrac’s technology also gives merchants access their financial information from any location, and provides access tracking and compliance services to help them manage and control revenue flow.
MoneyTrac further offers white-label payment software that lets customers brand their own payment platforms, and provides business consulting, marketing, branding, website design, mobile site development and e-commerce services. The cash-only transaction challenges faced by cannabis businesses, including safety, accounting and storage, are addressed by the recent inclusion of bitcoin technology, which gives both retail and wholesale clients a secure payment option.
Global Payout recently announced (http://nnw.fm/KAd05) that MoneyTrac is in the final stages of forming a new joint-venture partnership agreement with an established financial institution to offer banking solutions to cannabis businesses, which would place MoneyTrac among very few companies possessing the ability to do so. The chief reason behind the initial launch of MoneyTrac was to address the many challenges faced within the cannabis industry, and Global Payout says the joint venture would enable MoneyTrac to deliver a greatly needed solution while positioning the company to potentially secure various revenue-generating service agreements and both short- and long-term revenue streams. Additionally, it will bolster the value of MoneyTrac’s service offerings to cannabis clients.
“The potential surrounding the anticipated completion of this joint venture is absolutely huge for our MoneyTrac Technology brand,” MoneyTrac CEO James Hancock said in the press release announcing the joint venture partnership. “MoneyTrac was launched almost exclusively to address the many different challenges that businesses in the cannabis industry face with trying to operate their legitimate business, and one of those challenges remains the lack of access many of them have to banking solutions. This JV would allow us to provide a much-needed solution to these businesses and put our company in a position to potentially secure a number of revenue generating service agreements that could most certainly create significant short and long-term revenue streams for us in addition to increasing the value of our service offerings for our clients within this industry.”
Near the end of September, Global Payout demonstrated the diversity of its business model with the announcement (http://nnw.fm/3I2dg) of MoneyTrac’s finalization of a majority ownership acquisition of PotSaver, a revenue-producing community periodical that provides listings of discounted cannabis-related products for dispensaries and stores in Southern California. This majority ownership acquisition has provided MoneyTrac with an immediate revenue stream from PotSaver’s existing subscription-based earnings, and PotSaver further generates revenue through an agreement with Greenrush, which operates the cannabis industry’s biggest on-demand delivery platform, connecting medical marijuana patients with local dispensaries located throughout California, Nevada and Colorado.
MoneyTrac has further indirectly entered the multibillion-dollar cannabidiol (CBD) market through a contract with H Smart Inc., a division of Marijuana Company of America (OTC: MCOA). H Smart develops and distributes cutting-edge wellness and CBD products and is set to profit by using MoneyTrac’s technology to pay commissions for its affiliates. It is anticipated that MoneyTrac will experience significant revenue through this agreement during the current fiscal quarter.
MoneyTrac has also partnered with BlazeNow, Inc., an advertising and data collection platform that connects cannabis-related businesses with customers and patients. BlazeNow is a majority-owned subsidiary of MediaTechnics Corporation (OTC: MEDT). Through this partnership, MoneyTrac intends to pursue joint-revenue products and services and will pool each companies’ resources to grow both brands.
Another standout company offering services to the marijuana industry in a very different way is Kush Bottles (KSHB). Kush Bottles is the largest distributor of packaging, supplies and accessories for cannabis businesses and consumers in the United States. With facilities in the three largest cannabis markets in the U.S. and a local sales presence in each major U.S. cannabis market, Kush Bottles has sold over 100 million units and regularly services more than 4,000 legally operated medical and adult-use cannabis dispensaries, growers and producers throughout North America.
Kush Bottles offers a broad selection of products ranging from custom packaging and labeling to items offered for point-of-sale purchase like grinders, lighters, glass pieces and papers. The company further offers various packaging items that are ready for customization and houses a design team that creates branded solutions for clients’ products. Kush Bottles additionally helps clients meet cannabis packaging compliance requirements in their respective states.
A broad array of services is offered to the cannabis industry through General Cannabis Corp. (CANN), which operates as a comprehensive national resource and trusted partner for cannabis businesses. The company’s operating divisions include security, marketing, real estate, operational consulting and products, and financing.
Serving as a synergistic holding company, General Cannabis’ subsidiaries include Next Big Crop, which offers consulting services for the cannabis industry, from cultivation to processing to sale; Chiefton Supply Co., a cannabis apparel company based in Colorado; Iron Protection Group, a premier provider of security services for the cannabis industry; and Chiefton Design, a provider of brand development and design services for cannabis enterprises.
Another premier player in the cannabis market, catering to both cannabis consumers and providers, is MassRoots (MSRT), a leading technology platform powered by over a million users. Mobile apps offered by MassRoots—available through both the Apple App Store and Google Play Store—enable marijuana consumers to make well-informed cannabis purchasing decisions by accessing consumer-driven reviews and ratings presented in user-friendly formats. Cannabis businesses are also able to leverage MassRoots through strategic advertising that lets them target consumers based on their preferences and tendencies.
The company further offers MassRoots Retail, a compliance and point-of-sale system that enables cannabis-related businesses to streamline their retail operations as well as manage compliance reporting to their state regulators.
Another significant component of the legal cannabis market is medical cannabis, and many companies are endeavoring to offer alternative forms of treatment for sufferers of various ailments and diseases. Within this space, Arena Pharmaceuticals (ARNA) is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of novel, small molecule drugs with optimized receptor pharmacology. Arena’s endeavors are not solely focused in cannabis, but among its efforts the company is currently engaged in an ongoing randomized, open-label and parallel phase 2a clinical trial of APD371, which is an orally available agonist of the CB2 receptor (the body’s naturally occurring cannabinoid receptor system) under evaluation for the treatment of pain associated with Crohn’s disease. This internally discovered, investigational drug candidate is also being explored for potential development in other indications. Regarding pain application, APD371 is designed, through its selectivity, to offer pain relief without psychotropic effects or the potential for abuse or dependence.
As demonstrated, there are many different avenues for investment within the booming marijuana market, and innovative companies such as the ones mentioned have found varied ways of serving cannabis enterprises and customers. Whether an investor is looking to get involved with a company that handles the cannabis plant or one that doesn’t, the field is certainly green with opportunities.
For more information on Global Payout, please visit: Global Payout, Inc. (GOHE)
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