CannabisNewsWire Editorial Coverage: Growth has been the dominant theme in the cannabis market. Estimates by Forbes put the legal cannabis market at a value of $7.2 billion (per a February 2017 report), and the market is expected to generate more jobs than government, manufacturing, or utilities in the coming years, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Numerous industries are being impacted. Cultivation and medicine are just a couple of examples, but cannabis is showing a strong presence in the retail, consulting, and consumer sectors. SinglePoint, Inc. (SING) (SING Profile) has focused on business development in multiple segments thanks to its diverse acquisition strategy, while Surna, Inc. (SRNA) has excelled in its AgTech focus. On the other hand, mCig, Inc. (MCIG) is serving the consumer market and AbbVie (ABBV) and 22nd Century Group, Inc. (XXII) are heavily vested in the vast medical arena.
SinglePoint (SING), a holding company that originated in the mobile technology sector, has assembled a diverse portfolio of subsidiaries. Its own SingleSeed subsidiary has had multi-industry impacts by addressing the unbankable aspects of the cannabis industry. At its core, SingleSeed addresses a significant obstacle of the marijuana industry. Because federal restrictions forbid traditional banks from backing marijuana merchants, businesses must rely on cash-only transactions, which presented numerous security and accounting problems.
SingleSeed’s aim is to make cashless transactions and high-risk credit card processing available to cannabis and other high-risk companies. SingleSeed also offers other business development services such as digital packages focused on helping cannabis businesses grow their customer base and create loyalty through website building, affiliate marketing, web traffic analysis, and event planning. The overriding theme here is that SingleSeed is positioned to serve the cannabis business needs of a diverse range of businesses in the cannabis industry, regardless of the current federal banking guidelines and the oversight of the FDIC.
A robust acquisition strategy has enabled SinglePoint to dig its heels into several other segments of the marijuana industry, without ever touching the plant. Among other acquisitions, SinglePoint’s portfolio includes its investment in packaging and distribution company Convectium (http://nnw.fm/6oZ5x), which sells machines that fill vials with oil and which created a unique system for filling/packaging vape cartridges and disposable vape pens; and indoor garden supply company DIGS Hydro (http://nnw.fm/oh7ZW).
Most recently, SinglePoint announced the finalization of a Letter of Intent to acquire 51 percent of a company in Denver, Colorado (http://nnw.fm/rO8kK). This company is already approaching an annual revenue of $1 million.
“We are committed to identifying and making investments in companies that strengthen SinglePoint’s value,” company CEO Greg Lambrecht stated in the news release. “Our goal is to find and acquire companies we believe will add instant value as well as the opportunity for major growth.”
As SinglePoint participates in multiple industries connected with the marijuana market, other businesses exemplify specific sectors. Surna, Inc. (SRNA) is an AgTech and consulting firm. Like SinglePoint (SING), it serves a diverse base, from cultivators and investors, to engineers and contractors. The company is devoted to engineering and development of cultivation facilities, and the planning of controlled environments. Technology is its specialty; an automation system provides all the real-time/historical data necessary to simplify the cultivation process.
A Biosecurity Program includes testing and reporting for facilities. The company also conducts air and surface quality tests to ensure facilities are sanitary. Another technology offering is the use of photocatalytic oxidation equipment to clean air of pollutants such as bacteria, fungi, and volatile organic compounds. Surna is a specialist in lighting as well. A vented reflector system increases efficiency and the amount of light that shines on a target by 9 percent. In addition, the company’s patented LED lighting system is designed to maximize efficiency in cultivation facilities.
Focused on a technology of a different type, mCig, Inc. (MCIG) has targeted the consumer market with its ownership of Vitacig, a cigarette alternative and essential oil diffuser, and Vapolution, Inc., which produces a specialized glass vaporizer. The company’s 420 Cloud unified community platform targets a diversified audience of users, patients, businesses, doctors, dispensaries, and entrepreneurs. The cross-channel platform integrates a news media platform, job search system, and commercial networking platform. Consumer-centric functions such as gamification and ads are planned. There are plans to distribute the platform through partnerships with dispensaries. MCIG is also involved in the AgTech market, as it provides consulting and warehouse customization that includes controlled growing systems, energy efficiency conversion, and modular kits that function inside existing facilities.
The pharmaceutical and medical industry has been impacted by the cannabis market in big ways. Research and development is a major focus by many companies looking for the latest innovative treatments. AbbVie (ABBV) is one of them. Its 29,000 employees include scientists and researchers, manufacturing specialists, and experts in communications and regulatory matters. Drug development is taking place in key areas such as immunology, oncology, neuroscience, and virology as well as general medicine. The company has put together a pipeline that consists of potential treatments for Crohn’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, Parkinson’s disease (Duodopa has been approved), and a wide variety of cancers. There are also potential new drugs for hepatitis C (Mavyret has been approved), cystic fibrosis, and diabetic nephropathy. A variety of other products are approved for distribution by healthcare professionals, and available depending on the individual country.
The contribution of 22nd Century Group, Inc. (XXII) is an industrial hemp plant that has no psychoactive tetrahydrocannabidiol (THC). This is a bonus for U.S. farmers who are restricted to growing crops with THC levels below 0.3 percent. Aside from this innovation, XXII is involved in the medical sector with its clinical studies of nicotine cessation products (it was originally a tobacco company), and a range of consumer products in this area. But like SING, it actively pursues business development, although in the form of partnerships, joint ventures, and in- and out-licensing.
Today’s cannabis industry incorporates cultivators, retailers, pharmaceutical companies, consultants, and others. Business development is a goal of many, such as SinglePoint. Technology providers like Surna are prevailing in the current market, as are consumer-focused ventures such as mCig. Pharmaceutical firms such as AbbVie and XXII, heavily involved in research and development, are also examples of businesses making the cannabis industry as diverse as it has become. The trends have resulted in opportunities and revenue for a multitude of market sectors.
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